Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Todd Palin: 'First dude' and right-hand man

With a man like this and a women like his wife along with a documented war hero, I don't know if Washington is going to be able to handle it. I think the old ways may be out.

As "first dude," the title he prefers, Todd Palin reinforces the average-family image that his wife, Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, has sought to project.

He is a member of the steelworkers' union and has continued to work part time for BP in the oil fields of the North Slope, and summers as a commercial fisherman, since his wife was elected. He also finds time for more traditional duties, like playing host to former first ladies of Alaska for tea, or judging the 2008 Miss Alaska beauty pageant - the contest in which his wife had been named runner-up and "Miss Congeniality" nearly 25 years earlier.

He is a champion snowmobiler known for his navigational skills - a four-time winner of the Iron Dog competition, a 2,000-mile, or 3,200-kilometer, race that is Alaska's equivalent to the Daytona 500. He drove the last 400 miles of this year's race with a broken arm after he was thrown 70 feet, or 21 meters, from his machine in a crash.

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