Probe Challenges Head to Court

The legal sideshow to Troopergate is advancing --  two court challenges to the state legislature's probe Edit HTMLhave been combined and are now set to be argued before a judge.

There has been no sign that the suits have altered the course of the investigation itself, which is expected to conclude Oct. 10.

Two weeks ago, five Republican lawmakers filed suit against the bipartisan panel which created the inquiry, the probe's manager and the special counsel spearheading it.  Last week, the state attorney general - a Palin appointee - filed another suit, also aiming to stop the probe, claiming the legislature does not have the authority to investigate Palin.

An Alaska Superior Court judge combined the two suits on Monday, according to the Anchorage Daily News, and scheduled a hearing for Thursday.

Meanwhile, documents which purportedly contradict Palin have surfaced, according to the paper.  Walt Monegan -- Palin's former Public Safety Commissioner, whose dismissal is at the heart of the controversy -- told a reporter last week he had e-mails which disprove the governor's claim he was a "rogue" employee who acted out of sync with the administration.

"I'm a good soldier," he told the paper.

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