By now you’ve heard it: Sarah Palin yesterday told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren she has “a fire in [her] belly” about 2012.

“I think my problem is I do have the fire in my belly,” she said when Van Susteren asked whether she wants the White House.

What Palin does with that fire, of course, remains to be seen. As she acknowledged to Van Susteren, she has plenty of practical, pragmatic factors to consider. Regardless, she’ll surely play a part in the 2012 election, as she suggested the second time she used the expression in the segment.

“I am so adamantly supportive of the good, traditional things about America and our free enterprise system,” she said. “I want to make sure America is put back on the right track and we will do that by defeating Obama in 2012. I have that fire in my belly.”

She’s not the only one to have that particular fire in her belly. Here’s hoping that’s where the focus of the 2012 GOP primary season remains … on the “good, traditional things about America and our free enterprise system.” It’s encouraging to know Palin will lend her considerable voice, charm and cheerfulness to the cause of the GOP regardless of whether she throws her hat in the ring as a candidate. And if all the GOP candidates shared the graciousness Palin displayed when she said last night, “We all stumble; we all make mistakes,” the Republican nominee — whoever it might be — would be in great shape. That kind of politeness could only make it easier for the base to coalesce around one candidate later.