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Palin: I Can't Be Blamed for GOP Losing Presidency in 2008

CHICAGO -- Sarah Palin said she thinks the Republican ticket lost the 2008 presidential election because Americans were looking for change, and not because she undermined the campaign or was unprepared for the vice presidential seat. 

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired Monday, Palin said the economy tanked under a Republican administration and people wanted to try a different path. 

"They were quite concerned about the road that America was on with our economy. They did not want more of the same. They did not want status quo. And I think, unfortunately, our ticket represented what was perceived as status quo," she said.

"I don't think I could be blamed for losing the race any more than I could be credited with winning the race had I done a better job as a candidate," Palin added.

Appearing on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" a day before the release of her 413-page book, "Going Rogue: An American Life," Palin said she knew she didn't have a good interview with CBS' Katie Couric, but thought that Couric was interested in a partisan agenda.

Palin said in hindsight, she wishes she had given some exact examples when Couric asked her which newspapers she reads.

"I was already so annoyed and it was unprofessional for me to wear my annoyance on my sleeve," Palin said, noting that she perceived Couric's question as suggesting that Alaskans are Neanderthal and uneducated.

As for her daughter's pregnancy, Palin described to Oprah the handling of the news that Bristol Palin was pregnant, saying that the then-17-year-old Bristol was embarrassed to see her pregnancy on the news. Palin said she tried to console Bristol and thought the campaign botched the message management on the pregnancy and thought that the realism of the situation should have been the message that shone through. 

"I was naive to think that reporters would leave my kids alone," she added. 

Palin said it's "a bit heartbreaking" to see Levi Johnston, the father of her grandson, taking the road he has chosen. Palin said Johnston, who is set to appear in an upcoming edition of Playgirl magazine, is appearing in "porn," and on a path that is "not a healthy place to be."

Johnston has been working up a Hollywood career, and has said he plans to shovel some dirt on Palin. Last week, he traveled to New York City to shoot his Playgirl photo spread, and told FoxNews.com that he is trying to get custody of his son. 

"That's all I care about right now," he said. 

Click here to read Fox411's interview with Johnston.

Palin said that Johnston hasn't been back "in a while" to see his son, Tripp. Bristol is taking care of baby Tripp full-time, but has the support of a large family, she said.

Not closing the door entirely, Palin said Johnston is working his gig but he is "family," "is loved," and that it could all work out in the end. 

"We don't have to keep going down this road of controversy and drama. We're not really into the drama, we don't really like that. We're more productive we have other things to concentrate on," Palin said. 

The new memoir doesn't contain any references to Johnston but she told Oprah that she continues "to hope for the best and to pray for Levi." She did not, however, invite Johnston to Thanksgiving. 

There is an "open invitation for Levi to come to Aunt Katie's house for Thanksgiving dinner in Washington," she said in an apparent reference to Couric, whom she called "the perky one."

While Palin is promoting her book, she also appears to be preparing for a future in politics despite stepping down from the Alaska governorship over the summer. 

"I'm concentrating on 2010 and making sure that we have issues tackled as Americans, to make sure we are on the right road," she said, adding that she wouldn't say whether she is running for president in 2012 regardless of whether she was asked.

"I'm looking forward to affecting positive change between then and now. I don't know what I'm going to be doing in 2012, it's not on my radar screen right now, as I am dealing with so many issues that are important," Palin told Winfrey. 

"More and more I am learning, you don't need a title to make a difference," she added.

Even if she's cagey on her political goals, Palin is keeping her name in the spotlight. "Going Rogue" is already a bestseller and she has re-launched the PalinforAmerica.com Web site, which will create a community sign-up for Palin supporters around the country; forums and organizational opportunities for Palin fans. 

"We want this site to be used as a tool to inform and organize people who support Sarah Palin and believe in the causes that will restore America," reads the site.

Insiders who've spoken with Palin recently said she seems eager to run in 2012, but Palin faces some public opinion problems. In the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll, 60 percent overall said she is not qualified to be commander in chief while 52 percent said they see her in unfavorable terms.

But among Republicans, Palin's favorability rating skyrockets to 76 percent. 

Palin told Oprah that the title of her book came from the very first time she publicly broke ranks with John McCain's campaign over its decision to withdraw from Michigan. Palin's book will be released Tuesday and she begins a book tour Wednesday in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Fox News' Carl Cameron contributed to this report.