Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin

A fellow tea-party candidate and Alaskan politician who drew Sarah Palin’s endorsement in 2010 says it’s not “out of the realm of possibility” that the former governor might still run for president in 2012 … as an independent.

Former Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joe Miller evaluated the chances Palin might run in a conversation with Aaron Klein during the host’s “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” program on New York City’s WABC Radio.

When asked if Palin, who announced she would not seek the Republican nomination for president, might consider running as an independent, Miller replied, “You know, I think it’s unlikely. I don’t think it’s out of the realm of possibility, but certainly if you ask her today, I think she would affirm that there’s no way she would do that.

“In fact, she made it very clear in her statement that she is going to focus not only on making sure the Republican nominee wins in 2012, but also to assist in making sure that the Senate is retaken,” he continued. “So at least taking her opinion today, she would tell you no.”

Miller, however, refused to slam the door on the idea: “But I know Sarah, and the reality is she’s a fighter. If she sees the country in desperate need of leadership not being provided by either of the two parties, who knows? Maybe she would jump into it.”

The full audio of the interview can be heard on Klein’s website.

Miller bested Alaska’s incumbent Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski in a primary leading up to the 2010 election. Echoing many tea-party causes in his campaign, Miller won Palin’s endorsement. In the final election, however, Murkowski retook her Senate seat, running as an independent.

Palin announced earlier this month on the Mark Levin radio show that she would not be running for president in 2012:

“Not being a candidate, really you are unshackled and you’re able to be even more active,” she told Levin. “I need to be able to say what I want to say.”

In a full statement to supporters, she continued, “I believe that at this time I can be more effective in a decisive role to help elect other true public servants to office – from the nation’s governors to congressional seats and the presidency.”

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