Oh here's a news flash - Alaska Governor Sarah Palin is not going away so fast. Despite losing the opportunity to serve as the United States first female Vice President, Palin is still a pop cultural icon - but more so perhaps, political forces have four long years to work with the one time beauty queen and make her a force within the fractured Republican party.
After all, it was Palin who helped rejuvenate the party, created near even odds for the Republicans to win and....more importantly, the Palin action figure dolls all sold out.
So what are the odds?
Ireland's leading online bookmaker, Paddy Power (US customers prohibited at this time) has wasted little time posting odds on the 2012 US Presidential election, making Sarah Palin a 3-1 favorite to get the Republican nominee, followed by Mitt Romney at 5-1 odds. Palin is also listed with the next best odds (7-1) after President-Elect Barack Obama, to become the next US President. She is listed with better odds than Hillary Clinton (10-1). We can also anticipate a wide list of novelty bets involving Palin, probably in the next few weeks.
According to Nicholas Watt of the Guardian Newspaper, an exasperated McCain has been telling friends in recent weeks that Palin is even more trouble than a pitbull.
In one joke doing the rounds, the Republican presidential candidate has been asking friends: what the difference is between Sarah Palin and a pitbull? The friendly canine eventually lets go, is the McCain punchline.
Despite Palin's newfound national profile, she is anything but a sure shot to become the frontrunner for a wounded GOP in 2012, writes Karen Breslau of NewsWeek.
"Other young, charismatic Republican governors are waiting in the wings," Breslau writes. "Louisiana's Bobby Jindal and South Carolina's Mark Sanford are already both well known in the conservative movement and are sure to give Palin tough competition. And former Arkansas governor and 2008 dark horse Mike Huckabee (though he's now detoured from politics with his talk show on the FOX News Channel) is also a potential contender. Palin herself said during an impromptu Election Day interview at the Mocha Moose in Wasilla that, "if there is a role in national politics, it won't be so much partisan." That could come as a surprise to the conservatives surveyed by NEWSWEEK, who say Palin has at least an even shot for 2012."
Already websites such as http://www.palin4pres2012.com/ have been set up to promote Palin.
"It is time for a real change back to conservative economic and political solutions in 2012 before it is too late and the election of true conservatives starting in 2010 and Sarah Palin as President in 2012 will be major steps for a change in the right direction!" that web site declares.
Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher