CHICAGO (Reuters) - Suddenly, Sarah Palin is everywhere.
Palin, U.S. Republican nominee John McCain’s vice presidential running mate, was kept cloistered for weeks during the heat of their losing campaign against Democrat Barack Obama.
The McCain campaign largely kept her under wraps out of fear that she might make more verbal missteps as she did in high-profile television interviews shortly after she was picked as McCain’s No. 2.
But now that she is no longer under the watchful eyes of McCain campaign officials, the Alaska governor is talking, and talking and talking.
She will talk some more in Miami on Thursday when she holds a news conference and addresses a Republican governors meeting.
On Wednesday night, she was talking to CNN’s “Larry King Live,” where she was pressed on whether she had cost McCain the election.
“I personally don’t think that I, Sarah Palin from Alaska, the VP pick, I don’t believe that I caused the outcome to be what it was,” she said. “I think the economy tanking a couple of months ago had a lot more to do with it than the VP pick.”
This was just hours after CNN had her talking to anchor Wolf Blitzer, who wanted to know whether she might run for Alaska Republican Sen. Ted Stevens’ seat should Stevens have to step down because of a conviction for corruption.
Maybe, she said, while noting that she wants to serve the people of Alaska the best way she can and “at this point it is as governor.”
“Now if something shifted dramatically and if it were, if it were acknowledged up there that I could be put to better use for my state in the U.S. Senate, I would certainly consider that but that would take a special election and everything else,” she said.
“I am not one to appoint myself or a member of my family to take the place of any vacancy.”
What about Palin running for president in 2012, Fox News Channel’s Greta Van Susteren wanted to know the other day.
Palin did not rule it out.
“If there is an open door in (20)12 or four years later, and if it is something that is going to be good for my family, for my state, for my nation, an opportunity for me, then I’ll plow through that door,” she said.
Palin generated a lot of emotion on the campaign trail. Her supporters, many of them social conservatives, were ecstatic about having her on the ticket. Her detractors did not think she was qualified to be a heartbeat away from the presidency.
Now the issue is 2012, and some serious jockeying is already going on among Republicans. One possible Republican presidential aspirant, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, said on Wednesday he was glad Palin was being vocal.
“I think it’s a good thing that Sarah Palin is going to be speaking out,” Jindal told MSNBC. “I hope all of our governors will talk about what they’re doing in their states, learning from each other.”
Jindal and another possible candidate, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, will all be in Miami along with Palin.
Editing by Chris Wilson