Sarah Palin doesn't think she is to blame for the Republican party's election defeat on Tuesday, saying that voters were swayed by a "woeful" economic situation.

When asked Wednesday morning if her selection as John McCain's running mate might have been a factor in his defeat, the U.S. Republican vice-presidential candidate said that nobody should give her that much credit. 

However, she said that if she cost McCain even one vote, she's sorry, because she believes McCain is the definitive American hero, and she "believed that it was his time."

Almost 40 per cent of voters who were surveyed at the polls on election day said Palin would be qualified to become president if necessary.

About four in 10 independents said Palin's selection had an important impact on how they voted, with a narrow majority of them supporting Obama.