WASHINGTON (CNN) – In her first speech outside Alaska this year, Republican Gov. Sarah Palin praised her state, criticized the president's economic recovery plan and talked at length about her anti-abortion views.
But she didn't touch on what a lot of people wanted to know: Will she run for president in 2012?
Palin's appearance before the sold-out Vanderburgh County Right to Life dinner in Evansville, Indiana, brought in nationwide media and forced organizers to open up an overflow area for attendees.
"It's great to be here in Indiana, the crossroads of America," she said to thunderous applause.
Palin's dinner speech took her out of Alaska in the waning days of her state's legislative session, drawing harsh criticism from Democrats.
Listen: Palin proves she's still a draw. CNN Radio reports.
"They condemn anything that I do, but especially traveling outside the
state to speak in another state at a function like this," she said. "Which is ironic, because these are the same critics who would love to see me outside the state forever, permanently, you know, outside the governor's office anyway."
The state legislature on Thursday rejected her nominee for attorney general, adding more tension for a governor who many in her state see as being too preoccupied with national ambitions since she was picked to be Sen. John McCain's running mate in last year's presidential election.
Palin's reticence to request the full economic stimulus money owed to Alaska has also sparked concerns back home.
She criticized the Fed's economic stimulus package as having too many
strings attached and said states will "at the end of the day realize those dollars can actually be bad for states."
"This isn't free money folks. Our nation is $11 trillion in debt. This is borrowed money," she said. "We're borrowing money from China, and we may someday find ourselves enslaved to countries that hold our notes."
Palin dedicated most of her speech to the anti-abortion cause and her support of adoption. She became emotional when discussing her son Trig, who has Down syndrome, and the fear and concern she felt during her pregnancy.
"I had to call upon my faith and ask that my heart be filled up and I will tell you, the moment he was born, I knew for sure that my prayer was answered and my heart overflowed with joy," she said choking back tears.
Palin is scheduled to attend a breakfast Friday morning in Evansville with members of S.M.I.L.E., a nonprofit for relatives of those with Down syndrome.
Sarah Palin is an amazing woman who understands what real hard-working, God-loving Americans feel and want. Thank you for writing a positive article about Governor Palin.
oh shut up already..you're not qualified to govern a state much less the free world..I'm so sick of your honty-tonk bs!
only Palin can unify the GOP in 2012. She certainly knows how to achieve consensus in Alaska.
It's hard to believe anyone takes Gov. Palin serious as a national figure. I'm still amazed she was elected governer of a state. It would never happen anywhere but Alaska.
Actually, Sarah, we don't mind if you stay in the state forever, because that way you're Alaska's burden, not ours...
For me, the "Big Question" is when will she shut up?
"they condemn anything I do" Really? This from the women whose only claim to fame is to condemn anything the Dems do. That's her only real appeal; she feeds the hatred of the right. She is not offering any suggestions, ideal or plans, just letting the right complain and hate the majority of America.
But if Sarah leaves Alaska, who will protect the state from the Russian invasion?
Long after Obama has written his memoirs of his 1 term in office, Palin will be in the political spotlight for a long time to come, undoing the damage of the brief era of Obama socialism.
"Which is ironic, because these are the same critics who would love to see me outside the state forever, permanently, you know, outside the governor's office anyway."
Did she mention that the critics are within her own party!
Palin is AWOL from AK while her aides are up there trying to handle her business. Go home and do your job or are you afraid they will finally impeach you?
For all that people screamed up and down what an idiot sheis during the Presidential Campaign, Mrs. Palin seems to be the only one able to grasp the obvious truth that this "Stimulus Money" and all these projects the president wants to enact are paid for by money from places like China, and all debts come due, sooner or later.
All of the smears by the media only endear her to her base. It happened with Rush, it's happening with her. Chicago-style radicalism works in Chicago, not the rest of the country.
So, Palin knows when life begins? What, does she discuss things with God when she is flying along side the russian jets? Admittedly, she is way up there! Oops, I guess that should be way out there! I hope she does run in 2012- that would be the best thing that could happen for the democrats.
I truly do not understand the appeal of this person. She is not the brightest bulb and is very divisive. Honestly I would really like to know what people see in her that would make her a good leader?
Poor Sarah! Everybody against her! Poor little misunderstood girl next door! Sorry honey but people know a barracuda when they see one. I have total faith that eventually you will just fade away!!
Mostly Sarah, a lot of us would just like to see you out of the limelight. You seem to be one of a few governors that get national attention. Instead of critizing the current administration (sorry you lost. You are the reason I didn't vote for McCain), why don't you offer up suggestions on how to make things better?
I'm starting to get sick of all the Palin coverage.
Sarah Go Home!
I like Sarah.
Liberal left, start your "paid by the far left rant mocking her" blogging. You come out of the bowels of the country whenever her name comes up.
Why not blog about some of the criminal appointees that Obama is naming? How about Napalitano trying to target citizens rights?
If Mr. Bush did that, you'd be all over the blogs.
I don't trust her.
I sure hope this lady is the Repugs standard bearer in the future. She will help keep them in second or third place in the political arena in America.
It wasn't just Democrats who were criticizing her, it was Republicans as well. CNN itself reported on that. Come on.
Palin / Joe the Plumber in 2012 is just what we need to put the last nails in the coffin of the GOP!
Yes, the title of the article says it all for me, she speaks to and for people who sellout on America.
This woman is totally stupid to go up before an audience and talk about the state which she governs and say they want her gone. Palin hasn't learned anything, but then again you can't expect anything from someone who lacks intelligence.