Fox admits Palin “certainly sounds like” she is going to run for president -- will they sever her contract?

Last night, Fox News' Sarah Palin told ABC News that she thinks she could beat Obama in 2012 and is currently “looking at the lay of the land” and trying to decide if she will run for president.

Continuing their foray into heretofore unimaginable ethical quandaries, the Fox media empire is currently aggressively promoting Palin's comments.

Here's the front page of Fox Nation from earlier this morning:

And the front page of

On America's Newsroom this morning, host Martha MacCallum described the interview as a “bombshell,” and said that Palin “certainly sounds like she's planning on running.” MacCallum also pointed out that it's “not too early for folks to be declaring”:

Yesterday, we questioned when it becomes completely inappropriate for Fox News to keep their stable of putative presidential candidates on staff (though I'd argue that ship has long since sailed). When Politico reported on Fox's presidential candidates, Fox told them that they would immediately sever the contracts of any employees that declare candidacy. But Fox is trying to have it both ways here.

They breathlessly hype any indication that Palin is running for president and featured her on their 12 for 2012 series on Special Report, and are now forwarding her contention that she could beat Obama in 2012.

You are either a news organization, or you are paying likely presidential candidates for the service of letting them use your network to reach millions of Republican voters.

You can't be both.

Now their daytime “news” hosts are acknowledging that Palin “certainly sounds like she's running.” If Fox had any semblance of ethics, they would not wait for Palin (and their other candidate/employees) to “officially” declare - they would put the appearances on hold until she makes up her mind. But, of course, they won't do that.

Incidentally, both guests on America's Newsroom this morning - Jason Roe, former deputy campaign manager for Mitt Romney, and David Webb, co-founder of Tea Party 365 -- did not think Palin could beat Obama. This puts them in league with Fox News' Mort Kondracke and Karl Rove.