Governor Palin will step down as Alaska's governor in the next few weeks.
Nobody knows why, yet, although I'm sure we all will soon enough. I wish her the best of luck for the future, whatever her course of action may be.
Update: Smitty (chief operating officer of The Other McCain) chides me in the comments for committing the unforgivable blogging sin: declining to speculate. Ok, let's see what some of the likely options are.
Possibly, Palin has had enough of elective politics and plans on finding other outlets for her talent and energy that will enable her to be of service to her state and/or her country. She is on record as claiming that she's spending 80% of her time having to deal with nuisance suits and bogus press stories, and Palin is one of the very few politicians whose word I would take if what she is saying is that she's retiring because she's not able to commit as fully to the day-to-day job of running the state as she thinks is warranted (yes, I believe she really is that conscientious).
The most important question is whether she is getting out of elective politics altogether. I hope she doesn't, but there are those who think that less than one term as governor would probably act to effectively bar her as a serious presidential candidate. Possibly, for 2012, but after that, who can say? Maybe she'll run for congress or the senate - a much easier task than going straight for the presidency, and a natural stepping stone for that prize in 2016.
Or maybe she's just had enough of the BS associated with politics and she's going to strike out in an entirely different direction. I wouldn't blame her if she did, but, again, I'm hoping we haven't seen the last of her on the national political stage. Palin is a natural, and I'd hate to think that the bungling of John McCain's incompetent handlers in rolling out her candidacy as Vice President has destroyed her career; if it has, then Schmidt et al have a lot more to answer for than merely helping John McCain lose the presidency (in retrospect, the latter outcome now seems to have been well-nigh inevitable, and, frankly, spoiling Palin's chances for higher office represents a far greater blunder than hanging on to John's coattails as he blundered off the cliff).
Update II: Friend and commenter Rebecca suggested earlier that the Left would go in for some rather outrageous spin. Well, that didn't take long.