Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is confounding fans and foes anew, saying that she's nearly ready to make a decision on running for the GOP presidential nomination while dismissing the presidency as a "shackling ... title."
Amid speculation that she will announce her intentions as early as next week, Palin appears to be rethinking the value of running for and winning the White House, worried that it would muzzle her ability to be a maverick and rogue in the political process.
"Is a title worth it? Does a title shackle a person?" Palin said late Tuesday night on Fox New's Greta Van Susteren show.
"Is a title and is a campaign too shackling? Does that prohibit me from being out there, out of a box, not allowing handlers to shape me and force my message to be what donors or what contributors or what political pundidts want it to be? Does a title take away my freedom to call it like I see it and to affect positive change needed in this country? That's the biggest contemplation piece in my process," she added.
Her comments seemed to jar Van Susteren who suggested to Palin that the presidency provides a bigger platform from which to make change. "There's more power being president," said the host, prompting Palin to answer, "you don't need a title to make a difference." [See photos of Palin and her family.]
Palin said that her future role in American politics is what she and her family are discussing as she swiftly nears a self-imposed decision deadline.
"That's a debate right there itself, whether a title is needed to make a difference or [if] someone can be rogue and be maverick, can be passionate about issues and get people to think very wisely about the decisions and the candidates that we need in order to make the decisions for our country. Which is the best place for that individual to be?" she said. [Read: Insiders Say Palin, Christie Can Still Jump In.]
But she's not worried about getting in and winning, telling Van Susteren she would win.
As for when she will announce her decision, Palin noted that several ballot deadlines are fast approaching, forcing her hand. "Decisions have to be made."
Her comments about the presidency flabbergasted Democrats while Republicans said they are very confused about her plans.
GOP officials asked about her comments said that they indicate that Palin appears to be backing away from running. "She really needs to get in now if she wants to play. The door is closing," said one.