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Could Sarah Palin Get in the Race This Week?

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- This is the week Sarah Palin will tell the world her  intentions whether or not she'll run for president in 2012 -- or at least that’s what she indicated to ABC News’ Jake Tapper at the Iowa State Fair last month, telling him September was "practically speaking...kind of a drop-dead timeline" when it comes to "jumping in the ring."

With only five days left in the month, that means this week is the "drop-dead timeline," right? Not exactly. Since her early August trip to Iowa, she’s backed off on her self-imposed date, but as the days, debates, and campaign events creep by and the state filing deadlines loom, the window may be closing.

Since marking the September “drop-dead timeline” at Ames, she’s wavered on a date in interviews on Fox News.  Two weeks ago, Greta Van Susteren asked Palin about a “drop-dead date” and the former Alaska governor demurred.

“I’m not going to let the media tell me or dictate when a drop-dead date should be. So I don’t have an answer for you on that one yet,” Palin said, adding that she’s “engaged internally with my family in discussions. And I still have that same old dopey same old answer that I’m sure you guys are getting sick of hearing, and that is: I’m still thinking about it, praying about it, contemplating,” Palin told Van Susteren. “I’m sick of giving the same answer, believe me. I’m anxious to give an answer and get on with life one way or the other.”

Then last week, Palin told Fox News' Sean Hannity that she’s “still considering the time factor,” but that “it is going to be an unconventional type of election process.”

When Hannity suggested to the former vice presidential nominee that November is the month she would have to announce because of legal filing deadlines, she conceded that “legally you do, because you have to start getting your ducks lined up to have your name on these ballots.”

Not even her staff is aware of whether she will pull the trigger or not. According to a source with knowledge of the SarahPAC inner-circle, just as it was six months ago, she has not made an announcement to her staff about her intentions.  As the days creep toward state filing deadlines, no new staff has been hired. Her core group of about six staffers runs the organization while a volunteer group completely independent of SarahPAC called Organize4Palin or O4P tries to lay the groundwork in states, most notably Iowa.

Although time will ultimately tell, the same source told ABC News that “there is a developing consensus among former aides with knowledge of SarahPAC that she has decided not to run.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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