Sarah Palin finally ended speculation that she would enter the 2012 presidential campaign late Wednesday when she released a letter to her supporters announcing her decision not to join the race.
The decision immediately devastated her ardent supporters who see the former Alaska governor as the savior of the Republican Party as well as the nation.
Supporters rushed to her Facebook page to register their disappointment:
Lavonna Allee wrote, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO you need to rethink your not running. We are all your family."
Cindy Bishop Pattison wrote, "This is a very sad day for America. We have lost the one person that could have straightened out this mess that has been made, I won't mention his name, everyone knows his name, and so does the person that has caused the mess."
Charleston Chu responded, "This is a terrible mistake! Mrs. Palin, I am your biggest fan! You MUST run for President, or at least Vice-President...the fate of America depends on YOU!"
Bill Carpenter Sr. said, "I can't describe how sad I am right now. The brightest star our country has had in a very long time will not be shining in our nation’s capitol. America is going to be the biggest loser here. Our country and my state of California will not recover unless we encourage more Sarah Palin's to step forward. I feel a similar pain in my stomach as when Obama was elected. God Bless Sarah Palin and God Bless America."
Andy Sandoval wrote, "SARACUDA! You did what you knew God wanted you to do. That's the important thing. Not what I wanted from you. Who know's the plans of God. Its hard right now to swallow, but you have upcoming speeches that I am looking forward to. Praise God!"
The former Alaska governor had this to say on her website concerning her reason for not becoming a candidate:
"After much prayer and serious consideration, I have decided that I will not be seeking the 2012 GOP nomination for President of the United States. As always, my family comes first and obviously Todd and I put great consideration into family life before making this decision. When we serve, we devote ourselves to God, family and country. My decision maintains this order."
Still, despite her reported reasoning for not joining the campaign, Palin was about to face a number of fast approaching filing deadlines by which to register her candidacy in a number of states. In fact, she was running out of time, as Matt Seyfing, an attorney who has handled ballot-access and delegate issues for five presidential campaigns, told Politico:
"It isn't inconceivable that somebody could get into the race as late as the first or second week in October and manage to get it all done," provided they knew what they were doing, but any later than that, he said, would probably be impossible.
Palin may have considered this in making her decision, nevertheless, it is clearly immaterial to supporters like Tom Ferriday who said on Wednesday:
"I just got back from work and feel stunned. I just cannot believe it. This decision ensures Obama's re-election. I just CANNOT believe it."