Palin: I could have brought change in '08

Republicans would have been more successful in the 2008 presidential elections if she was at the top of the ticket, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin suggested Saturday.

Speaking at the India Today Conclave in New Delhi, Palin was asked why the GOP ticket did not defeat then-Sen. Barack Obama (D). Palin said Obama ran a strong campaign and effectively billed himself as a change candidate.

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Pressed by India Today editor Aroon Purie that she also represented change, Palin replied, "I wasn't at the top of the ticket, remember?"
 
The 2008 vice presidential nominee said she was not claiming she should have been the nominee over Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), but her comments provide a glimpse of her potential appeal to voters should she choose to run for the nomination in 2012.

Palin reiterated she has not yet decided if she will run.

"I don't think that there needs to be a rush still to get out there as a declared candidate," she said.

When asked about the greatest lessons she learned from 2008, Palin did not mention the friction between McCain's camp and hers. Instead, she said the experience informed her public relations strategy.

"One thing I learned is that you cannot trust the mainstream media to accurately report on [your record and accomplishments]," she said. "You have to have the boldness, the courage to set the record straight yourself."

She even accused Republicans of not defending their records vigorously enough.

"Too often, Republicans have the fighting instinct of sheep sometimes," she said. When it comes to correcting the record, "I will put my foot down."


Rebutting a criticism often used against her, Palin said, "It's not victimization, I'm not playing the victim card."

Palin also touted her role as a key figure in the Tea Party movement, saying it helps enforce accountability amongst politicians on both sides of the aisle.

"It's going to grow, it's going to be more influential and it's going to hold our politicians accountable," she said.

Palin even compared the Tea Party movement to the pro-democratic uprisings that have sprouted up across the Middle East.

The Tea Party is "all about empowerment of everyday, independent patriots ... to change the balance of power," she said. "The changing balance of power throughout the world today is driven by empowerment of the individual ... That's what we are seeing throughout the world today."