My guess is that Mitt Romney holds the future of the Republicans in 2012 in his hands. I believe that Sarah is about cooked politically, even though some percentage of the Republican Party memberships seems to be fixated on her at present. At least Romney has plenty of experience dealing with big-city media as the former Governor of Massachusetts. His father was also Governor of Michigan at one time too, so he has that background in his blood too. I can't say what led the citizens of Alaska to elect her to the office that she held there, but I do know that she has plenty of upset critics there these days.
My guess is that her choice as McCain's running mate was less based on what was known about her and more based on trying to pander to aggrieved members of the female community once the Democrats had nominated Obama rather than Hillary Clinton as their candidate. My guess is that the choice of her as McCain's running mate accelerated her departure from political office because of the sudden media exposure which it appears that she was ill-prepared to deal with.
I have to wonder why the choice of other much more experienced Republican women was not made. There were several available choices that the Republican Party could have made that would have offered much more experience than Sarah possessed. Perhaps it was because Sarah was such an unknown that McCain's people thought that they could slip her in and their choice indicates some level of naivete on the senior Republican's part over the sophistication of our modern media and our electorate to quickly root-out facts.
If you are a Republican there is always next time,
"We stay here, we die here. We've got to keep moving". Trucker Mark