Over the course of his 2012 presidential campaign, Mitt Romney has procured dozens of endorsements. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has yet to put herself on that list.
On Tuesday's edition of Fox News' "Hannity," Palin addressed doubts regarding her support for Romney. Speculation was revived when she did not include him in her speech last weekend at the Americans for Prosperity RightOnline conference.
Palin explained that endorsements were not the focus of the event, noting that no individual mentioned Romney in their speeches.
“There is a reason I did not mention Gov. Romney in my speech at the Americans for Prosperity Foundation event and RightOnline over the weekend, and that’s because I would have violated the ground rules for Americans for Prosperity Foundation,” Palin told Hannity.
She added that her support for Romney stems from her "day one" mantra.
"It has been anybody but Obama," Palin said. "We have a presumptive nominee now in the GOP process after a good competitive and very spirited competition to find that presumptive nominee and, yes, if that vote were to be taken today, obviously I would vote for president -- for Governor Romney over President Barack Obama in a heartbeat. I wouldn't blink because I go back to what I said at the beginning -- anybody but Obama.”
Prior to Romney passing the 1,144-delegate threshold to become the Republican nominee, Palin was an ardent supporter of rival Newt Gingrich. She urged Republican voters to stand behind the former House Speaker over Romney.
"We need somebody who is engaged in sudden and relentless reform and isn't afraid to shake it up," she said during a Jan. 30 Fox News appearance. "Shake up that establishment. So, if for no other reason, to rage against the machine. Vote for Newt, annoy a liberal. Vote Newt. Keep this vetting process going, keep the debate going."
Over the course of that process, Palin was also among the more vocal questioners of Romney's conservative record. In a Feb. 12 appearance on "Fox News Sunday", the former Alaska governor poked at his health care past, telling viewers that she was not yet sure of his level of conservatism.
"I am not convinced and I don’t think that the majority of GOP and independent voters are convinced, and that is why you don’t see Romney get over that hump," Palin said.
Three days later, Romney responded to Palin's comments, defending his conservative résumé on the same network.
"I'm not quite sure what she'd be referring to," Romney said during his Feb. 15 Fox News interview. "I'm pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, I believe in the Second Amendment. As governor, I balanced the budget every year I was in office, put in place a $2 billion rainy day fund, cut taxes 19 times."
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