Tea Party group asks Palin to run for RNC chairwoman

Tea Party Nation, a national Tea Party group, is asking Sarah Palin to run for Republican National Committee chairwoman.

Judson Phillips, founder of the group, posted a letter on TPN's website that he said he plans to send to the former Alaska governor. In it, he asks her to take on "the establishment" and run for the chairmanship of the Republican Party.

"We need you as Chairman of the RNC. You have shown in the past no hesitation to take on the establishment. You did it in Alaska. If we end up with establishment control of the GOP and their support for an establishment candidate in 2012, Obama and the socialists will have won," he writes.

He also criticized RNC Chairman Michael Steele's spending habits — spending is a major issue for the Tea Party movement.

Steele "has spent Republican money with the gusto of a liberal. You showed in Alaska, you know how to put the brakes on unnecessary spending," Phillips writes.

He adds: "Finally, you are a superstar. You have an unbelievable ability to light up a crowd and to raise money. Both of which the Republican Party needs."

Palin defended Steele's tenure earlier this year, when he was being attacked for the way he ran the committee.

"I support Michael Steele," she said on Fox News in April. "I think he's doing a great job. Michael Steele is an outsider. The machine, I think, is tough to penetrate. ... I think it's been good to have an independent outsider trying to create some change in the Republican Party."

(h/t Talking Points Memo)

UPDATED: Palin told ABC News she's not running for the job.

"I respect the desire to have someone in charge of the RNC who understands the wishes of the conservative grassroots and understands that power resides with the people and not the vested interests in DC. However, the primary role of the RNC chair seems be that of fundraiser-in-chief, and there are others who would probably be much more comfortable asking people for money than I would be, and they would definitely enjoy it more," she said in a statement.

-- This post was updated at 2:47 p.m.