WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2015 - This Day In History
Has Michael Steele Damaged His Credibility Beyond Repair?
Posted By jwilkes - Tuesday, March 10th, 2009 at 3:28 AM
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RNC Chairman Michael SteeleIt’s been just over a month since Michael Steele was elected Chairman of the Republican National Committee to raucous cheers from the party faithful, many of whom saw the election of the former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland as the first step toward a new day for the Grand Old Party.

After he was sworn in, Steele promised change, and undertook a media blitz of epic proportions, appearing on morning show after morning show to promote his new idea of a Republican Party filled with minorities and young people and conservatives and independents, and pretty much everyone in America except for hardcore liberal Democrats. And in the process, he’s made a string of jaw-dropping gaffes that scream “inexperienced politician,” and has thrown the entire party into tumult.

There was the appearance on D.L. Hughley’s new CNN talk show, in which he tried to connect with rapper and fellow-guest Chuck D, talking about what it was like using hip-hop music to make it out of “the projects.” Chuck D quickly replied that he’s not from the projects. Oops.

Then, on Carlos Silwa’s morning radio show, Steele sent out some “slum love” to Bobby Jindal, “the slumdog millionaire governor.”

He followed that up with a stop-in for a chat with FOX News’s Neil Cavuto, to whom Steele indicated that he’d be open to withholding party funding for 30-year Republican Senate veteran Arlen Specter’s campaign for reelection in Pennsylvania, by way of a punishment for the legislator’s support of the stimulus plan. Within a week of Steele’s comments, Specter was drawing talk of a primary battle, a contest that could end up handing the seat to Democrats. Oops again.

Then there was the disaster that took Steele from shaky to crumbled. In a moment that we still may not know just how badly will hurt Steele’s career, he proclaimed himself the “de facto leader of the Republican Party” and simultaneously called Rush Limbaugh “an entertainer,” “incendiary,” and “ugly.” That might have hurt him with a few ditto-heads, but that was a smack on the chin compared to the sledgehammer to the face of Steele’s credibility when he publicly apologized to Limbaugh- a glorified disc jockey- for questioning his role among conservatives.

Whether you’re a Steele supporter or not, you have to admit that those antics, especially the last one, were embarrassing to the party as a whole. And Steele was brought on to do just the opposite.

How many people actually know the name of the last RNC Chairman? It was Mike Duncan, a Bush loyalist who was largely installed at the RNC to hold down the fort. And just like every RNC chairman before him, Duncan kept a low profile, stayed off the cameras, and conducted business on a local scale. He spent time with state party chairmen finding out what they needed, and worked from there. That’s a far cry from Steele’ showboat style. And it’s becoming clearer whose method was better.

If Steele can’t even keep from firing torpedoes at himself and his party with what has turned out to be an enormous mouth, how can he possibly accomplish everything he claims he will. As of yet, he still hasn’t said how he plans to accomplish his lofty goals of multiculturalism and bipartisanship in the GOP. In fact, all he has said is that he’s not changing a single plank of the traditional party platform…apparently Steele thinks all those new voters will just come to him.

Michael Steele is good for Democrats. He’s all talk, no substance. And even when he is “talk,” it’s the most damaging kind of talk possible. His buffoonery is alienating the very people he’s trying to court, and leaving the typically reliable rank and file shaking their heads at the media circus their party has become. And worse, it’s created a power vacuum that has pushed the GOP closer to complete chaos.

So the question remains: how much longer will Republicans stand behind him?

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[-] Mr. Steele is a fool - Guest-The Bard of Wilmette
Michael Steele seems absolutely clueless regarding his role as RNC chairman. Then again, he does not tell me how to do my job, so I will not tell him how to do his.
[ Posted at 11:45 AM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] He had credibility? - Guest-apastafarian
[ Posted at 1:01 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Looks like that - Guest-ScienceDoc
"off the hook, hip-hop makeover" is not going real well.
[ Posted at 5:31 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
At best, it looked like an attempt to say "hey we have black people too". But after the dustup with Limbaugh, he is toast. It will just be a matter of time before they quietly remove him.

Rush lovers, your boy is devastating the remnants of the Republican party by his antics. Making these poor schmucks go crawling to Rush to apologize only makes the party look weaker.
[ Posted at 6:14 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Between him, Limbaugh, and Coulter we've got a great lineup for gaining House and Senate seats again in 10. Again in 10! Again in 10!
[ Posted at 7:12 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] I think we will win in 10, 12, 14, 16 and on - Guest-psilocynic aka Nick Zouroudis
based soley on our own merits. People are paying attention now and most have had the vail removed so to speak.
[ Posted at 7:38 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
eventually. Enjoy it while it lasts.
[ Posted at 7:40 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
a demographic wall that they can't scale. They've alienated and scapegoated the fastest growing populations in the country.

I suspect the republican rhetoric on immigration has done enormous damage that'll take a generation to undo.
[ Posted at 7:45 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Republican 'scientists' are crafting a new Frankenstein monster, with Ronald Reagan stem cell parts. The first prototypes might get the villagers to hoist their torches and burn the castle down to stop the monster, but eventually those rich neof@scists will figure out the correct amount of sugar and spice to put into the Monster who will appeal to folks when the Dems are down.
[ Posted at 9:24 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
scenario. In fact, there's no question that the republicans will attempt just that. The key will be the way the parties handle the re-depression.

If we let the republicans outflank us on the populist angle then what you say is entirely possible.

Here's hoping O plans to unroll a second stimulus package(or its equivalent) pronto. And what ever happened to capping executive pay for bailed-out companies?
[ Posted at 9:25 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] I agree. He's the best they got. - Guest-Aprognosticator o
Keep Steele and get Rush to run for public office...hell make him a represenative, we can afford the seat. By the way give JTP something else to mess up..he's bored. Keep these crazy people in the limelight where we can watch them!
[ Posted at 7:50 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
That would assume Steele ever had any credibility. Since he was willing to take the post of RNC Chairman, that can't be the case!
[ Posted at 1:35 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
Seems some distressed campaign committee funds were hoping for a dole in proportion to RNC-chair's $3 Million check writing.

So, when Steele wrote checks of $1 million to each of the campaigns, they asked why their "welfare" was so light.

The Hill:
" Republican infighting escalated Monday with allegations and denials over $4 million once destined for the party’s congressional campaign committees.
Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Michael Steele sought to placate critics by giving $1 million to each of his party’s debt-ridden campaign committees — a move that follows a month of bad reviews, national slip-ups and a high-profile fight with one of the country’s most famous conservatives.

But sources told The Hill that Robert "Mike" Duncan, the former chairman, had written checks three times that size — for $3 million to each committee — before he left, and that Steele slashed them to the smaller number.

That is a "lie," says the RNC — and so another round of recrimination begins.

Duncan wrote $3 million checks to both the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) to help them pay down their debt, sources told The Hill."

Oh yes, that whole check writing thing to campaign committees? That is the proper function of the rainmaker that should be a party chair.

And when you offer cut-rate service in your day job yet find time to make frequent media engagements ...

Tick-tock, tick-tock ...
[ Posted at 7:53 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Make sure Murphy wins in Ny-20. People are speaking up that that could kill Steele.
[ Posted at 7:28 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Why not Steele?
[ Posted at 7:29 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Keyes is worse than Steele - Guest-The Bard of Wilmette
Alan Keyes publicly said a couple of weeks ago: "It is obvious that Barack Obama is a radical communist, and he has got to be stopped!" Mr. Keyes' charaterization of President Obama is nonsense, but the ominous tone of "... he has got to be stopped" sounded to me as hinting that assassination is in order. Michael Steele may be way out of his depth for his job, but I don't think he means any harm, to Obama or anybody else. Alan Keyes, on the other hand, is truly dangerous. Of course, he will not directly advocate murder of a public official, but some twisted minds could make the inference that this is what Mr. Keyes wants somebody to do.
[ Posted at 12:13 PM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
[-] Sorry, but who cares? - Guest-Apphouse50
Dump him, get another just as bad or worse.

I like the idea of him staying and keeping them off balance.
[ Posted at 7:30 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
and hopefully Democrats can reap the rewards of their collective Republican failure.
[ Posted at 10:00 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] He had no credibility anyway - Guest-bumblebums
The damage was done in 2006, if not long before.
[ Posted at 7:31 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] That shipped sailed - Guest-truesteam
during his last election....
[ Posted at 7:31 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] They set him up as a target - Guest-War on Terro
then looked for excuses to lodge their putricity at him.

I don't think Mr. Steele will ever fathom how evil his party really can be.
[ Posted at 7:32 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Between him, Limbaugh, and Coulter we've got a great lineup for gaining House and Senate seats again in 10. Again in 10! Again in 10!
[ Posted at 7:32 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] I think that when they start calling for your - Guest-psilocynic aka Nick Zouroudis
resignation after 6 weeks you're done. I'm sure he'll fall up. They always do.
[ Posted at 7:33 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
after six weeks. I'm not sure that's the best metric of success/failure.
[ Posted at 7:41 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Yeah, but we're not. - Guest-psilocynic aka Nick Zouroudis
It's different. When Democrats start in on Obama that will be the same. We were calling or Bush to resign for years, but the right was happy as hell with him.
[ Posted at 7:44 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
he is running on the Change platform that the wingnuts don't believe in.
[ Posted at 7:34 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
the Hughley show? Or at least the ones that forced his apology to Limbaugh?
[ Posted at 7:35 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Yes - Guest-My Mom is My Hero
Who would have thought that D.L.'s show would be so newsworthy.
[ Posted at 7:39 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
It was 4 minutes, 58 seconds too many.
[ Posted at 7:42 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
caused Steele to kiss ass and coincidentally Hughly loses his show. That moment was highly successful if you as me because the show sucked otherwise and Steele deserves what he gets from his masters.
[ Posted at 10:01 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] I love Steele - Guest-crystal eyes
He has hip hopped his way into my heart.
Steele is my favorite Republican and I hope he has a long and entertaining career as RNC chair.
[ Posted at 7:36 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
He's always been a lying sack of Uncle Tom as long as I've been aware of him.
[ Posted at 7:37 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] See now - Guest-otto
That's what I was going to say. I figured I should scroll down to see if some other witty individual had already taken what may possibly have become my signature maneuver on this site.
[ Posted at 9:23 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] To be brutally honest with you - Guest-LeftHandedMan
we will gain politically if he stays, because he is pretty much as bad as any RNC head in recent memory, and we will gain politically if he is thrown out on his ass. The message will be clear:

If you are an African-American Republican, you only have value to the GOP if you are a defacto Jim DeMint of Color. Basically, you are there to say the exact same things that Jim DeMint or extremist South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford would say, only the GOP "theoretically" has more appeal to voters of color when you say it. Apparently, using the GOP's logic, this is because the words flow from the mouth of a minority.

"About as insulting to people of color as you can get, taking a stance that 'Oh crap. the other side picked a black guy and now he's President... damnit. We freed the slaves! Ungrateful! Um... we need a black person, quick, grab one! Put him on TV! Stat'"

Where they screwed up is that they wanted Michelle Malkin to be RNC head, and they got a man who actually thought the GOP wanted him to reach out to try and expand the party base. (Now, he did suck at this job, what with the 'bling bling' crap and all, coming across like your uncool uncle using the word 'boss' or 'groovy' often, but he tried. The next RNC head will be a Rushbot.)

"If NY-20 is a Democratic victory, he's gone."

They won't ask for his resignation if the GOP loses that race, they will call some emergency meeting of the RNC and force him out within days.

And JC Watts will look like a genius for staying out of the spotlight as the GOP flounders even more for credibility and outreach in non-white communities.

If Bobby Jindal hadn't given that response to Obama that trainwrecked so badly, he would probably be their dream RNC head. They don't get why Obama won.

So... they see he's black, they see he has appeal, and so they think a minority, any minority, can do the same thing.

If it was more serious than that, they wouldn't have picked a man like Michael Steele.
[ Posted at 7:51 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
He looked cleaner than the other racists, bigots, zealots, retreads, failures and nutjobs.

If they have someone with more credibility to replace him, then he'd be in real trouble. Joe the RNC Leader is all the caliber they've got right now to replace him.
[ Posted at 9:21 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
We need multiple parties in this country. Michael Steel is a weak leader, that is all there is to it. It seems to all be a symptom of the real rot in the GOP.
[ Posted at 7:57 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Limbaugh the next time Limbaugh says something bigoted or vile (there'll be plenty of opportunities), and then refuse to apologize.

Although I don't like Steele much, he represents a more moderate outlook, and I wish he and others would fight the extremists.
[ Posted at 8:03 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Who knew?
[ Posted at 8:04 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Are You Kidding?! - Guest-Olmecmystic
"Has Michael Steele Damaged His Credibility Beyond Repair?"

That question presupposes that he had some to begin with. The guy I call the "articulate idiot" has proved me right in just a month's time.

What's hilarious is that he really WAS the RNC's best choice at the time. If they get rid of him, who do they plug in? Ken Blackwell??? A black man who hates BEING black and other black people as well? He's more conservative than ANYbody white.

Or maybe one of those two crackers who didn't make the first cut? Remember the "Barack The Magic Negro" guy? NEgro? In 2009?

I think I'll just pop me some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the show. Republicans in disarray; I LOVE it!

[ Posted at 8:05 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
until Norm Coleman abandons his election contest.
[ Posted at 8:23 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Then what he's doing with the lawsuits makes sense. He's buying time so Steele can retire gracefully. Yeah, that's it! :)
[ Posted at 10:54 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] No credibility since - Guest-labradog
he registered as GOP.
[ Posted at 8:26 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] More Steele ha - Guest-sj
"He registered as GOP" has to be the best line I've heard about this laughing stock of a politican!
This guy is great... and by the looks of things, Republicans want Dem's in office for many many years!
[ Posted at 12:08 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
[-] He's a bit of a buffoon - Guest-Captain Antelope
and before all is said an done, probably a criminal. A lot of shady things are coming out of his time in MD.
[ Posted at 9:20 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
since he opportunistically decided a black man with mediocre talent would have an easier time getting attention as a Republican.
[ Posted at 9:21 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] can't damage - Guest-ENRICOs
what you never had.
[ Posted at 9:26 PM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
Wow, news to me.

Since his days in PG County he has always been a grifter working the next con.

[ Posted at 2:01 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
[-] With a surname like that - Guest-ultimathule
his credibility is as solid as...steel
[ Posted at 3:14 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
Michael Stalin and grow a beard. Credibility restored.
[ Posted at 11:44 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
and Michael Steele is their token. Do you think they put him in this position because he's qualified? A good leader? Smart? No...look at our new president. Look at Michael Steele. See anything they have in common?
[ Posted at 11:45 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
the American public's collective memory. I mean, we're talking about the same people that re-elected Bush, after all.
[ Posted at 3:34 PM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
Republicans deserve this. Choosing Steele was the worst sort of racism. Because people voted for Obama they assumed that it had to do with this skin color. As if, hey we can just use any black guy and people will vote for him. WRONG. It's just as dumb as parading just any old white guy. Or woman (ahem Palin).

It isn't about race or gender. When people voted for Obama they didn't vote black man. They voted for a particular black man. With the right qualities to lead. Michael Steele can't lead his way out of a tin can.

The Republicans, because of their racism, just choose some random black guy instead of really choosing the right person. Their racism has come back to bite them in the ass.
[ Posted at 11:36 PM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
President Obama was elected by Independents, Reagan Democrats, Blue Dog Democrats, Republican in Name Only, Libertarians, etc. From my "Independent" perspective... the GOP stands for 1) De-Regulation of Business and 2) Regulation of Morality. The De-Regulation of Business removed consumer protections, rewarded job outsourcing and caused the economic collapse. Allowing Evangelical Christians to set the social agenda caused the "Separation of Church and State" divide over: school prayer, sex education, AIDS prevention, abortion rights, gay marriage, etc. Today the DEMS stand for working class jobs and common sense. Who knows, next election may be the opposite!
[ Posted at 7:32 PM on 4/17/09 | Reply ]

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