Sarah Palin on Potential Presidential Run, Katie Couric

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," November 22, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And tonight on the special edition of "Hannity," an in-depth interview with former vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin. She'll talk about her faith, her family, her love of country and what may lie head for her in the coming months.

It's been only two years since the former Alaska governor burst on the national political stage. And since that time she has become the most popular and at times most polarizing leader in American politics.

Now this November nobody's endorsement was more sought after than Governor Palin's and nobody worked harder to send true conservatives to Congress.

She has been through controversy, she has been through triumph. She is here to tonight to give us an exclusive first look at her brand new book. It's called "America By Heart: Reflections on Faith, Family and Flag."

Fox News contributor Governor Sarah Palin joins us. Governor, welcome back. Good to see you.

SARAH PALIN, "AMERICA BY HEART" AUTHOR: Thank you so much, Sean.

HANNITY: You know I normally would make this my last question. But, in the lead-up to the election when I would ask you about your future plans, you'd say well, I'm thinking about the midterms. The midterms are over. Are you considering a run for the presidency?

PALIN: Well, now I'm thinking about 2012. And I am thinking about it, looking at the lay of the land and trying to figure out if my candidacy would be good for the national debate. Good for my family. Good for the country. If so, you know I would be willing to offer myself up in the name of public service. If there are others out there, though, willing to make the tough choices, the sacrifices that a candidate needs to make, then I can -- you know, rest assured that I can be a strong supporter of theirs.

So we'll see it who it is who wants to be in the line-up.

HANNITY: All right. What you said in The New York Times Magazine interview, you said, look, I'm engaged in internal deliberations. And then you talked about your family. But what are the internal deliberations? What are the things going through your mind?

PALIN: Well, it's personal consideration, because it's life changing, obviously, when you are willing to consider even putting yourself forward on a national stage -- again, in my case -- and being willing to really put your life, your family's life out there on the line. So there is a lot of prayerful consideration going into the personal aspect of it.

But, even more importantly, is the consideration of what is it that our country needs? We know we need common sense. We know we need experience in the Oval Office. We know we need someone who believes in time-tested truths and a restoration of all that's good and exceptional about America versus the transformation of America that presently we see coming out of the Oval Office.

So, considering who potential candidates may be who fit that bill I can kind of sit back and see what they're thinking about, considering what they may be doing. And if there is no one whom I feel is in a position to be able to beat Barack Obama and I feel that I am the candidate who can beat Barack Obama, I will run.

HANNITY: You said that your family is the most important consideration here. I assume that there had to have been some discussions with family members, you know, for example, where is Todd on this? Where are your children right now on this? Have you discussed it at this point? Are some leaning one way, some leaning another way?

PALIN: Haven't talked about it too much with the kids. I think I know them well enough that they circle the wagons being part of the team effort that is everything Palin is a team effort. And they would be there if I chose to go forward.

Todd certainly is there. Todd knows that we have been blessed with these opportunities to speak a common sense conservative message that reflects what I believe the majority of Americans are feeling and desiring in their government.

We're blessed with these opportunities. Todd is right by my side. And whether I choose to run for office or to continue being an advocate for our Constitution and our freedoms and our free enterprise, Todd would be there by my side no matter what realm we would be in.

HANNITY: All right. So can I take that as Todd leaning yes or is that unfair?

PALIN: You know I would think that Todd would be leaning yes because Todd knows -- of course he knows what a battle it would be. But Todd knows how important it is.

I mean this is about the future of our country. This is about all of our children and our grandchildren and their opportunities and the hope that they should be able to embrace because they are Americans. And yet much of that hope is eroding because of government policies and decisions coming out of Washington today.

So yes, Todd knowing that sacrifices would have to be made. Our ease, our comfort would erode because it would take a -- you know, a great battle in front of us to win that position, but Todd would be there. Yes.

HANNITY: All right. You were picked by Barbara Walters to be one of the 10 most fascinating people of 2010. And apparently in this upcoming interview -- it was released -- she asked the question, if you ran for president, could you beat Barack Obama? And your answer was?

PALIN: I said I believe so. And then I was surprised, Sean, at the reaction that that little tease has received throughout the country. Of course I believe that I could beat Barack Obama, otherwise why would I be even contemplating a run? And again, of course, it is only contemplation at this time. But I'd be in it to win it.

HANNITY: You talked about some of the other candidates. And we know at least the names of being bantered about. Nobody is fully committed. Probably the person closest to doing that, I would argue, is probably Governor Tim Pawlenty.

You said that you would face hurdles that other candidates would -- or other potential candidates would not have to cross right out of the chute. And the one would be proving my record. And you also said it's the most frustrating thing for you and that is what you believe is the warped description of your record.

What did you mean by that?

PALIN: Yes. That is a great question and I'm glad I get to address it because people probably think that my greatest frustration is the lies that are told in the tabloids and on hateful blogs full of anonymous sources about my family. And there are constant everyday lies that we have to read that are out in the public.

But, my family and I, thick skin, we can take it. You know we can take what the haters say despite the fact that there is injustice in the situation. I mean look at the other day. Willow finally, my 16-year-old, she had had it up to here with somebody saying very, very hateful things about the family and saying mean things about her little brother Trigg. And Willow finally responded and she used a bad word when she responded in defense of her family. And her response became national news, even hard news copy it turned into. So that's ridiculous and I had to explain to her, Willow, there is no justice here but you have to just zip your lip and let's move forward.

Anyway, that is not my greatest frustration. Mine is that my record, my administration records over the last 20 years in public service has been so warped. And a little bit in my book, "Going Rogue," the earlier book and in this book, "America by Heart," I got to talk about what it is that I have done as a CEO and as a commissioner and as a businesswoman, too.

What I have done with common sense solutions, time-tested solutions, to help on each level of government that I've served and private sector, to get in our own little circle the economy roaring again. By eliminating taxes and reducing other taxes and incentivizing businesses and job creators, not punishing work ethic.

Things like that that throughout 20 years of public service and campaigning I've been able to accomplish. And I know that other candidates, because the mainstream media hasn't been so adamantly and grossly opposed to their ideas, they haven't had to go through the scrutiny, the criticism, the lies that I have.

HANNITY: One of the things, you did get thrust into the public stage there. And so -- there was this immediate feeding frenzy. And we're going to get to the specifics in your book because there's a lot of interesting nuggets in there and things I learned about you, and even though I've interviewed you a lot I didn't know.

You did say something -- they kind of described you running a guerrilla organization is how the Times Magazine piece put it and that you run pretty much with your instincts on a lot of things. And I know that during the last campaign, you were frustrated because you felt like you were controlled by the presidential campaign. And for example, you wanted to do more media. In that Times' piece it says, you know, that yes, you're in the media and you're proud to be associated with Fox. But you said you're not avoiding anybody and anything.

If you were to get back out in the public arena and run for president, I mean would you -- would you then do interviews with the "lamestream" media figures? Would you even do another interview with Katie Couric?

PALIN: You know I would look forward to being even more open than I already many in speaking to the public. And I do that through social networks today, every single day I'm posting something about the discourse, the debate in the country and driving a lot of that debate. And I'm proud to be able to do that. But as a candidate for president, if I would chose to do that, yes, absolutely, I would be out there even more.

As for doing an interview, though, with a reporter who already has such a bias against whatever it is that I would come out and say, why waste my time?

No. I want to help clean up the state that is so sorry today of journalism. And I have a communications degree. I studied journalism. Who, what, when, where and why of reporting. I will speak to reporters who still understand that cornerstone of our democracy, that expectation that the public has for truth to be reported. And then we get to decide our own opinion based on the facts reported to us.

So a journalist, a reporter, who is so biased and will no doubt spin and gin up whatever it is that I have to say to create controversy, I swear to you I will not waste my time with her or him.

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