SHE JUST WON’T GO AWAY…. A couple of weeks ago, Michael Tomasky summarized exactly why so many see Sarah Palin as an offensive political figure: “Never in my adult lifetime has one politician so perfectly embodied everything that is malign about my country: the proto-fascist nativism, the know-nothingism, the utterly cavalier lack of knowledge about the actual principles on which the country was founded.”

Those who find this description compelling will probably be disappointed to learn that Palin now has a leadership PAC that will likely expand her political reach and influence.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has started a federal political action committee — called Sarahpac — that will allow her to raise money for and donate cash to candidates for office over the coming years, a move that should be seen as a precursor to a run for president in 2012.

The PAC has a website and a post office box in Arlington, Virginia but has not yet formally filed its incorporation papers with the Federal Election Commission. A call to the PAC was not returned.

Sarahpac is “dedicated to building America’s future, supporting fresh ideas and candidates who share our vision for reform and innovation,” according to a statement on the PAC’s website.

Leadership PACs aren’t uncommon, especially for likely presidential candidates — Huckabee and Romney already launched theirs — and are used to raise money, travel, and make campaign contributions to strategically-important, like-minded candidates.

If I were a voter in Alaska, I might wonder if my governor is focused exclusively on her state-wide duties. Between shopping for a book deal, traveling for Republican candidates, doing interviews with national media, and setting up a political action committee in Virginia, Palin’s interests seem to lie elsewhere.

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Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.