Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor, announced Wednesday that she will not seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012.

Palin made the announcement on the Mark Levin radio show, saying her family's wishes were the main factor in her decision. The decision came a day after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said he would resist the call to run for the GOP nomination.

Palin came into prominence when she was selected by John McCain to be the Republican vice presidential candidate in 2008. She has now associated herself with the Tea Party movement in the U.S.

Republicans have been searching for an alternative to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and were disappointed when Texas Gov. Rick Perry delivered a lackluster performance in the most recent GOP debate.

Romney and Perry remain the front-runners in the race but former pizza company executive, Herman Cain, has been surging in the polls recently after turning in consistently strong debate performances and winning the Florida straw poll late last month.

“Sarah Palin is a good friend, a great American, and a true patriot,” Texas Gov. Rick Perry said in a statement. She will “continue to be a strong voice for conservative values and needed change in Washington,” he added.

Though Romney has emerged as the front-runner it has to be noted that his support is not deep, mainly because of reservations expressed by conservatives with respect to his moderate positions on issues such as his advocacy for health-care reform.