LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Sarah Palin on Thursday praised tea party-backed politicians for "shaking up the good old boys" with new faces and ideas that she said will help restore the nation's prosperity.
In an interview with Fox News on Friday, she was the most open yet about the possibility of running for president in 2012.
"If the American people were to be ready for someone who is willing to shake it up, and willing to get back to time-tested truths, and help lead our country towards a more prosperous and safe future and if they happen to think I was the one, if it were best for my family and for our country, of course I would give it a shot," she said.
"But I'm not saying that it's me. I know I can certainly make a difference without having a title. I'm having a good time doing exactly that right now."
The 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate and former Alaska governor talked about her faith and motherhood, sprinkling in her conservative political views in a speech to an enthusiastic crowd of about 10,000 people at a gospel music convention in Louisville.
Palin espoused her limited government beliefs — a common theme for tea party candidates running in GOP primaries across the country. Earlier this week, tea-party backed Christine O'Donnell pulled off a stunning win in the Delaware Republican Senate primary, defeating nine-term U.S. Rep. Mike Castle, who also was a former governor.
"I was so thrilled with some of these upsets, these underdog candidates just in these last primaries who are showing the rest of the country — these tea-party Americans who are saying we just want our country to grow, thrive, to prosper.
"So these kind of underdogs, newcomers, new ideas, new faces, new energy in the political process that is so needed, kind of shaking up the good old boys."
Before speaking at the National Quartet Convention, Palin attended a private fundraiser in Louisville for another prominent tea party figure — Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul of Kentucky.
Paul's campaign did not immediately say how much campaign cash was raised.
Palin supported Paul in the spring primary, when the libertarian-leaning eye surgeon from Bowling Green defeated another candidate backed by much of Kentucky's Republican establishment. Paul is running against Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway in the fall to succeed two-term GOP incumbent Jim Bunning, who is retiring.
In her speech, Palin spoke confidently of the coming midterms, predicting that "we can take back the country." Republicans are hoping to win the 40 seats they need to seize control of the U.S. House.
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