Political logic and election law suggest that anyone hoping to make a serious run for the White House next year will need to be formally in the race by November.
Sarah Palin isn’t so sure.
The former Alaska governor appeared on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show on Tuesday, where she hinted ever so slightly that the current "unconventional" political landscape may allow for a later entry. (At the least, she has already proved that the current landscape has allowed would-be candidates to drag out their decisions much longer than one would expect.)
Here was her response to Hannity’s first question about whether she was ready to jump in the race: "There is still time, Sean, and I think on both sides of the aisle you’re going to see people coming and going in this race. … And I’m still one of those still considering the time factor."
Hannity responded by saying that Palin would need to decide by November in order to make it onto state ballots across the country, to which the former Alaska governor agreed. Kind of.
"You do, I mean legally you do because you have to start getting your ducks lined up to have your name on these ballots," she said. "But I do think, Sean, this is going to be such an unconventional election cycle because this has been such an unconventional administration that we are fighting so hard."
In case that wasn’t enough to suggest that Palin—despite being unhappy when others speculate about her political aspirations (see: Rove, Karl)—is in no mood to miss an opportunity to stay relevant in the GOP race, there was this response to Hannity’s request that she weigh the strengths and weaknesses of current "top three" contenders Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Michele Bachmann:
"Ron Paul may be in front of Michele Bachmann, according to certain polls. Shoot, I’ve seen my own name up there in the top three."