Alaska governor and former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin has announced she will step down from her job at the end of July.
Palin provided few clues as the reasons for her decision, limiting herself to citing the alleged attacks by liberals since her ill-fated vice-presidential run, the need to protect her family, but also saying she was now " looking ahead and how we can advance this country together."
The move has caused consternation among the Republican Party, still grappling for a leader in the wake of last year’s electoral defeat. According to some commentators, Palin’s resignation is likely to deepen the disarray even further.
A recent Gallup poll showed only 34 percent of Americans view the Republican Party favorably, Bloomberg reports. Even among Republicans, 38 percent have an unfavorable view of their party and almost half can’t name an individual who speaks for it.
Democratic commentators, for their part, have suggested Palin’s decision was motivated by her desire to prepare to run for a "higher office" in 2012.
Since her resignation, rumors about an alleged corruption investigation against Palin have also been rampant, prompting the FBI to officially deny them.