Recent news that former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin will not be attending the very first Republican Primary Debate from the Reagan Library on May 2nd. Governor Palin has accepted an invitation to headline a military appreciation event and fundraiser on May 2nd in Colorado.

Report from The Hill:

The potential presidential candidate is scheduled to speak at an event titled “Tribute to the Troops With Sarah Palin” at Colorado Christian University, in the Denver area.

The 7 p.m. Mountain Time event falls on the same day as the NBC News-Politico debate — the first of the GOP primary season — which will be held at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif.
John Andrews, a university official, told The Denver Post he was aware of the debate when the college booked the 2008 vice presidential nominee and said he did not expect Palin to attend the debate.
“Presumably, this means she will be doing [the fundraiser] instead of any other engagement on the second,” Andrews said.

The announcement comes as Palin continues to grapple with her decision on whether to run for president. Palin said recently she is still undecided.

“You enter a race to win the race, so there are still a lot of considerations that have to be made,” she told the BBC in an interview that aired Monday. “We haven’t made up our mind or desire to make an announcement yet as to what it is we will be doing.”

Palin said the considerations include her ability to match President Obama’s fundraising prowess and whether the country would be ready for an “unconventional” candidate like her.

Not too surprising and it certainly doesn’t mean that Palin has ruled out a 2012 run. May 2nd is a very early time to begin the debate cycle and I had fully expected some of the more well-known candidates to skip the first round. They don’t need to be there for name recognition so why risk a debate gaffe early on.

For those who do attend, it’ll be one less candidate to compete with.