Congratulations, Chairman Steele … and the RNC

posted at 10:20 am on February 1, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Allahpundit gave the election of Michael Steele as RNC chair great coverage on Friday, and I’d like to add my congratulations to both Mr. Steele and the RNC.  The election got conducted in a public, open manner, with several good candidates vying for the position.  Despite some early nastiness, the final few weeks of the debate focused entirely on the issues surrounding the Republican Party’s two successive electoral losses and how to rebuild the GOP back to a competitive position across the country.

I have to admit that I lost interest in the competition early in the process, mostly because the candidates all seemed to have realized that the organization needed a complete technological makeover.  Any of them would have done a credible job on the inside of the RNC.  I’d say that a change was necessary, though, which means that the RNC needed to say goodbye to Mike Duncan and try new leadership for new results.  Otherwise, the RNC had a slate of great candidates.

However, only one of them really had the national reach necessary for a party in the wilderness.  The GOP has no national leader in a political position.  If Republicans controlled the House, it would be John Boehner; if the Senate, Mitch McConnell; the White House, John McCain.  Without a national presence that can control the flow of legislation or agency enforcement, the RNC had to find a national chair who could provide a recognizable face and be at ease in the role of party spokesperson.  Of all the candidates, Steele alone fills that bill — and does so naturally.  He will provide an eloquent and welcoming presence in the national media for Republicans at a time when they need both to rebuild their strength as a big-tent party.

It took a few ballots, but the RNC finally recognized that need in electing Michael Steele.  I believe Republicans will find themselves very happy to have Steele as our representative on a variety of issues during the opening months of the Obama administration.


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If for no other reason than as an attack dog on the issues. Question: Will he get a pass on the race card when he attacks?

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:24 AM

Blacks give a second look at the GOP?

jgapinoy on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

Will he get a pass on the race card when he attacks?

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:24 AM

No and he is more black than Obama.

Remember our 1st black Pres?

It’s really about political philosophy.

Nothing more.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

Steele may try to run in 12 or 16.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:29 AM

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

I think Steele should test these waters quickly. We need to start framing the debate. For a long time now, all we do is defend. And weakly.

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:31 AM

I hope he gives it to Chucky Shumer with both barrels… Revenge is a dish best served cold…

phreshone on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

blacks won’t give the GOP a 2d look because of STeele. you would not believe their adoration of bambi down here in the boonies. to them, bambi is indeed the 2d coming.

but part of the RNC chairman job is PR. i think Steele comes across strongly, passionately & with great common sense.

kelley in virginia on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

Let’s just hope Steele doesn’t change his speech patterns depending on the audience in the way that Ogabe does.

Ogabe to white audience: Hello, it’s nice to see everyone here tonight.

Ogabe to black audience: Yo, wassup, how’s you all doin’?

Bishop on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

Interesting to see how he handles the porkulus bill.

the_nile on February 1, 2009 at 10:33 AM

Now lets see what he can do …

Great choice.

tarpon on February 1, 2009 at 10:34 AM

wassup

Bishop on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

WASSUP!!!!!

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:34 AM

Ed, OT but worthy of consideration:

AP Investigation: Banks sought foreign workers

Feb 1, 8:10 AM (ET)

By FRANK BASS and RITA BEAMISH

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) – Banks collecting billions of dollars in federal bailout money sought government permission to bring thousands of foreign workers to the U.S. for high-paying jobs, according to an Associated Press review of visa applications.

The dozen banks receiving the biggest rescue packages, totaling more than $150 billion, requested visas for more than 21,800 foreign workers over the past six years for positions that included senior vice presidents, corporate lawyers, junior investment analysts and human resources specialists. The average annual salary for those jobs was $90,721, nearly twice the median income for all American households.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM

For a party that has relegated itself to obscurity over the past two election cycles, this is a step in the right direction.

Rovin on February 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Bishop on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

And totally unnecessary since white audiences would probably be touched to be one of the “crew”.

Cindy Munford on February 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Steele has hosted for Bill Bennett and has done a great job. It’s not easy to host a radio talk show and he did it with aplomb. He’s clean and articulate so I like him.

Mojave Mark on February 1, 2009 at 10:37 AM

And totally unnecessary since white audiences would probably be touched to be one of the “crew”.

Cindy Munford on February 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Well carter liked that he was a clean an articulate boy.

the_nile on February 1, 2009 at 10:37 AM

Well carter liked that he was a clean an articulate boy.

the_nile on February 1, 2009 at 10:37 AM

Carter, too? I thought that was Biden.

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:38 AM

I see some owning of the Democrats on the horizon…

blatantblue on February 1, 2009 at 10:39 AM

Still, it boggles my mind that so many in the RNC were willing to flirt with a PR Apocalypse by following up the Obama election with the installment of Katon “there’s no coloreds in my country club” Dawson.

Lehosh on February 1, 2009 at 10:39 AM

No, he will get no passes from the MSM wing of the Democrat Party. They will paint him, as usual, an Uncle Tom carryin’ the water of the Massah. See, e.g., Clarence Thomas. But, with his strength of character and his forcible views on vouchers and education, he might just turn it around on them. So it is hoped.

TXUS on February 1, 2009 at 10:40 AM

TXUS on February 1, 2009 at 10:40 AM

Let them. I see it backfiring

blatantblue on February 1, 2009 at 10:41 AM

This is going to be fun. Mr. President and company are going to keep overplaying their hand. They will be lobbing softballs and hopefully, Michael Steele will hit them out of the park.

kingsjester on February 1, 2009 at 10:42 AM

I think his goal will be to solidify the base and keep them excited so we don’t stay home and secondly, not to creat republicans but more Indie fence sitters. This way when it comes right down to it…you go with what you know will always be there and protect you…the republican party.

tomas on February 1, 2009 at 10:42 AM

The problem with a black Republican is that liberals and other blacks view them as uncle toms. Clarence Thomas got mauled for that reason. They see them as sellouts and view them with a jaundiced eye at best. What works for democrats doesn’t translate for republicans in this respect. So I doubt this gives the party any advantage.

keep the change on February 1, 2009 at 10:44 AM

He is different in that he has always gone out and engaged people and when he does they at the very least…like him.

tomas on February 1, 2009 at 10:45 AM

keep the change on February 1, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Perhaps, but, as Lehosh alluded, we had no chance with someone like Duncan.

genso on February 1, 2009 at 10:46 AM

Mark Preston over at CNN said that Steele will not be the only one speaking for the GOP, that others will now be stepping up. Sounds a little racist on Preston’s part.

JonRoss on February 1, 2009 at 10:47 AM

Steele recognized what was lacking in the organization and the deficiencies of the communication aspect of the RNC. He will do a fine job.

jencab on February 1, 2009 at 10:48 AM

It will be interesting to see how Obama responds to Steele. Steele can go on every Sunday talk show or cable news show he can, every week he can and articulate (one hopes) a conservative GOP message.

Obama has to ration his appearances and send out proxies like the inept whiteboy Gibbs (who makes Scotty McClellan look good).

Wethal on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

The msm will try to pit Steele vs Rush.

Guaranteed.

They will question Steele over and over until he takes a position.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

I’d say his first issue at hand should be to make sure that Franken is not appointed to office by the courts. Let’s face it, that was a textbook example of how to steal an election, and it looks like the left is getting away with it. While the MSM may give their blessing to this miscarriage of “one man, one vote”, I’m pretty sure that a big majority of Americans would definitely not. The RNC should pull all stops to insure that justice is done in that case by getting out the facts.

Besides the outrageous corruption of the election process, sending Franken to Washington will put the Republicans right at the precipice of being totally powerless, something I’d think the RNC chair should view as priority #1.

Wine_N_Dine on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Michael Steele will be able to expose the idiocy of the liberals with a smile.

sheriff246 on February 1, 2009 at 10:50 AM

Obama has to ration his appearances and send out proxies like the inept whiteboy Gibbs (who makes Scotty McClellan look good).

Wethal on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

The msm IS Obama.

He doesn’t need to be present, they will represent him.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:50 AM

Didn’t you wish you were getting this for your birthday!” A wii for everyone! Awesome!

The GOP really needs to fight this fight. If the GOP Senate stops it, it is the start of going in the right direction.

Mr. Joe on February 1, 2009 at 10:50 AM

all the MSM questions will be an effort to creat a wedge and trip him up…there will be no softballs. We can’t dump him if he makes a mistake.

tomas on February 1, 2009 at 10:53 AM

TXUS on February 1, 2009 at 10:40 AM

Michael Steele will not let the press get a pass. He is much too bold. He is prepared to play a very different game after this election.

Listening to him speak about the need to catch up, keep up and take the field tells me he will go head to head with the left and Obama.

The Uncle Tom thing has played out to the end with the American people. It’s just not effective anymore Steele will not back down.

I have issues with some of his ideas but overall I think he will play offense oppose to defense, which has always been the Reps. biggest problem.

katy on February 1, 2009 at 10:53 AM

The msm will try to pit Steele vs Rush.

Guaranteed.

They will question Steele over and over until he takes a position.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Rush could officially hand over “the office of opposition” to steel. Rush will find a way to ridicule MSM.

the_nile on February 1, 2009 at 10:56 AM

The msm IS Obama.

He doesn’t need to be present, they will represent him.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:50 AM

Yes, I suppose that’s true. If they book Steele for an appearance, they don’t need to call for a Dem to give the Dems’ point of view, too. The interviewere will do it for them.

Wethal on February 1, 2009 at 10:57 AM

The msm will try to pit Steele vs Rush.

Guaranteed.

They will question Steele over and over until he takes a position.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM

I saw a quote this past week from Steele. Something like he had no quarrels with Rush, and Rush does what he does very well.

If they can’t get a fight going between Rush and Steele, no doubt they’ll paint Steele as Rush’s lackey.

Wethal on February 1, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Limbaugh and Steele understand all to well the tactics the left will use.

They are smart enough to tag team against the left. They both understand the stakes.

When they do join up, then the real fireworks begin.

The Obama war room is working overtime right now.

katy on February 1, 2009 at 11:05 AM

Steele was the correct choice IF you are out to be the party of opposition to the Democrats.

He has a good toolbox to be able to play the Dems game of identity politics.

However, IMO, he is not the person the Repubs needed to rebuild the party if you wish it to mean anything.

Two Key planks of his outlook, as stated in his OWN writings…

He believes in affirmitive action. This places groups as more important than individuals… and taints any philisophical underpinnings of the rest of his stances.

He believes that the Government has to deal with Global Warming, and has supported Cap and Trade. So much for a philosophy of limited government…

IMO Steele is just like all the other politicians in Washington, they have Positions… but no underlieing philosophy.

You may agree with his positions, but positions can change with the political wind.

The Republican party just prooved, that they are going to continue down the road of being Dem Light…. not truly a different choice.

Romeo13 on February 1, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Let’s just hope Steele doesn’t change his speech patterns depending on the audience in the way that Ogabe does.
Bishop on February 1, 2009 at 10:32 AM

One of the things that I don’t like about Steele is that he has a tendency to lapse into jive-talk, although he doesn’t do it to target a particular audience. His overuse of the word “baby” beyond the one time it was an effective slogan (drill, baby drill) is a particular irritant to me.

Buy Danish on February 1, 2009 at 11:15 AM

I will extend credit to the Obama campaign for a few things; their effective use of the internet, orchestrating busloads from 5 states to show up in St. Louis for the Sermon on the Mount and labeling McCain “erratic” when he made a colossal blunder of suspending his campaign.

If Steele can get in gear and implement a high-tech plan, effectively strategize for rallies for a 2010 win and create slogans or sound bites about the lost promises and weak foreign policy plan of the Obama administration, this could be quite successful.

I hope he takes advantage of all the open doors that will be coming his way in the near future.

sherry on February 1, 2009 at 11:33 AM

Blacks give a second look at the GOP?

jgapinoy on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

Not in general. Most blacks seem to have not only drank the kool-aid but also the kool-aid package.

Jamson64 on February 1, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Go to mediatakeout.com and see the reaction amongst the general black populace. Why, he’s an uncle Tom! A sellout! A token!

SouthernGent on February 1, 2009 at 12:07 PM

Steele did a fine job on Fox News Sunday. Comes across as capable and determined. Didn’t allow Chris Wallace to frame the major issue as abortion and didn’t rise to the bait when asked to name the up and coming GOP leaders. He named Palin as one of several.

a capella on February 1, 2009 at 12:18 PM

You cannot overestimate the effect that Steele’s telegenic personality will have at least keeping the Republican center in the MSM, the Internet and blog sites. Tell me how many Americans could identify Mike Duncan as the chairman of the GOP between 2006 and 2008. Probably no more than 10%. Give Steele another month on the job I predict that over 50% of Americans will know who Steele is and by this time next year 3/4 of Americans will know of Steele. That alone will be a major boost to Republican fortunes in 2010 as he appears on Fox and the MSM continually and makes a tremendous impact. As a former salesman it would take me ten pages to properly express the impact a great communicator can have on advancing the GOP cause.

technopeasant on February 1, 2009 at 12:25 PM

AP Investigation: Banks sought foreign workers

Feb 1, 8:10 AM (ET)

By FRANK BASS and RITA BEAMISH

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) – Banks collecting billions of dollars in federal bailout money sought government permission to bring thousands of foreign workers to the U.S. for high-paying jobs, according to an Associated Press review of visa applications.

The dozen banks receiving the biggest rescue packages, totaling more than $150 billion, requested visas for more than 21,800 foreign workers over the past six years for positions that included senior vice presidents, corporate lawyers, junior investment analysts and human resources specialists. The average annual salary for those jobs was $90,721, nearly twice the median income for all American households.

artist on February 1, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Since I live in Ca. this pisses me off. I never trusted Banks. Now I am livid. Looks like I will be doing some writings. Since I am a Bank courier, I will start asking them questions tomorrow.

Steele is a good man. I hope he doesn’t get poisoned. I am happy he was elected to the RNC Chair. Yippee Yi Yo!

sheebe on February 1, 2009 at 12:27 PM

technopeasant on February 1, 2009 at 12:25 PM

Good comment.

genso on February 1, 2009 at 12:27 PM

No, Blacks will not give a second look to Steele or the Republicans. They hate him because he is a Republican. Did they look at Clarence Thomas with any fondness? Nope. He wasn’t cool. However, getting the Republicans back on track is Steele’s job. I think it is a huge mistake to pander to the Blacks or Hispanics, for that matter. Just take the conservative message of freedom to the public and pound away at it starting now. You are never free when you take government money. You are dependent. It’s just like a form of slavery. You can never be any better than the government wants you to be. Pound away at that and eventually some will understand.

BetseyRoss on February 1, 2009 at 12:34 PM

Steele will break through the Black veil of conservative ignorance.

The Clarence Thomas flap was decades ago. That argument doesn’t hold anymore. Although he is still a public name is NOT a public figure and in the news and is not a persona that will be identified as a role model or used as a leader in the black community.

With the election of Obama, blacks are in the public eye now more than ever. They will be held to account for their choices and decisions and scrutinized more closely for their personal and public successes and it will be a painful time for them. This will cause the black community to take a closer look at whom they chose to represent them and why.
I believe this will cause them more serious reflection of their values and direction.

Michael Steele will give the black community a real look at intelligent contrast with the traditional black model and has great potential to turn a historic corner in black political thought especially if he is out there with a constant and artciulate conservative leaning message.

katy on February 1, 2009 at 1:19 PM

I can’t wait to get my first letter in the mail from our new chairman. When Duncan sent me a letter I threw it away.

lavell12 on February 1, 2009 at 1:35 PM

This is what the liberals see when they see someone like Steele…they can’t handle it.
The most racist people in America are the liberals…

right2bright on February 1, 2009 at 1:43 PM

The difference between liberals and conservatives is that libs think governments job is to take care of people and cons think that it is governments job to take care of the country and people should do for themselves. Steele is going to have a hard time getting the most spoiled generation in history to realize they have to get off their butts and provide for themselves. When I saw that women it the middle of Hurricane Katrina wade through waist deep water out to her mailbox to see if her check had come, I realized this entitlement mentality has really warped some peoples view of life.

If Steele is going to continue the dem-lite path of kissing illegal aliens butts and encouraging affirmative action, if he is going to go along just to get along in order to be liked by the press, cough..JOHN MCCAIN..cough,then the GOP is going to continue to shrink and shrink.

I’ll reserve judgement on Steele right now and I’ll give him a chance, but I’m not very optimistic about him.

Bikerken on February 1, 2009 at 1:43 PM

The difference between liberals and conservatives is that libs think governments job is to take care of people

Bikerken on February 1, 2009 at 1:43 PM

No, the biggest difference is that the liberals are racists…they only care about buying a vote, and not helping minorities.
What liberal ran school district is any where near exceptional? The libs job is to keep minorities uneducated, blue collar, or on the government dole…is has nothing to do with “beliefs”, it has everything to do with keeping them on the democrat plantation.

right2bright on February 1, 2009 at 1:48 PM

Still, it boggles my mind that so many in the RNC were willing to flirt with a PR Apocalypse by following up the Obama election with the installment of Katon “there’s no coloreds in my country club” Dawson.

Lehosh on February 1, 2009 at 10:39 AM

You have to understand who the RNC is. It’s made up largely of a bunch of fossils who have held their state committeeman posts for decades. Most of them have been around since before Reagan. They have no idea how the general public perceives the party right now. That’s why I think it is fairly miraculous that they elected Steele.

rockmom on February 1, 2009 at 1:53 PM

This is a good thing. I am very excited about Michael Steele as RNC chair, despite the peanut gallery antics of the left.

chunderroad on February 1, 2009 at 1:59 PM

R2B, I was talking about liberal voters, you are talking about liberal politicians. If that’s the case, I totally agree.

Bikerken on February 1, 2009 at 2:00 PM

I like him. I expect that he will work out fine and will heal some of the rifts between the base and the party bureaucrats.

argos on February 1, 2009 at 2:22 PM

R2B, I was talking about liberal voters, you are talking about liberal politicians. If that’s the case, I totally agree.

Bikerken on February 1, 2009 at 2:00 PM

Liberal voters are racist and the people they elect are racist…Let me put it so there is no misunderstanding.
LIBERALS ARE THE MOST RACIST GROUP IN AMERICA
Any questions…just ask how many Oreo cookies were thrown at Steele by politicians, and how many by “voters”.

right2bright on February 1, 2009 at 2:22 PM

As I wrote under Allahpundit’s artcle, Michael Steele is an excellent choice and, I believe, the right choice.

Phil Byler on February 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

1. Anyone who thinks blacks will take a second look at the Republicans because of Steele doesn’t remember how he was treated during the 2006 Senate race in MD. Or how his handful of Dem black supporters were treated.

2. We’ve already tested this with the other huge Dem group, the Jews. Ken Mehlman was head of the RNC at the same time his opposite number, Howard Dean, was spouting moral equivalency about the Middle East. I doubt one Jew switched parties.

None of this is to say that Steele is a bad choice. I supported him. I just don’t think anyone should underestimate the difficulty of recruiting core Dem constituencies.

Attila (Pillage Idiot) on February 1, 2009 at 2:30 PM

I’m happy w/ the pick of Mike Steele. Very inclusive and hard-earned the Republican way by Mike, as in via shoe leather.

HotAirJosef on February 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Michael Steele will not let the press get a pass. He is much too bold. He is prepared to play a very different game after this election.

Listening to him speak about the need to catch up, keep up and take the field tells me he will go head to head with the left and Obama.

The Uncle Tom thing has played out to the end with the American people. It’s just not effective anymore Steele will not back down.

I have issues with some of his ideas but overall I think he will play offense oppose to defense, which has always been the Reps. biggest problem.

katy on February 1, 2009 at 10:53 AM

Totally on target, katy, especially that we need to be on Offense…. Steele is unflappable and will give it to the MSM and the Obamaphiles with both barrels, all the while smiling. I don’t agree with every one of his positions but I feel he is the right personj for this job at this point in time.

Red State State of Mind on February 1, 2009 at 2:40 PM

Steele should persuade blacks on these issues:

1) School Choice – Until you are truly free to choose the school for you children, you will always be helpless and stuck on the plantation, slaves of the Democrats who gave you policies to destroy your families and make you cattle.

2) Crime – Black neighborhoods in many areas are rampant lawless areas of no hope. Bring their neighborhoods ORDER so they can live with less fear.

3) Abortion – Planned Parenthood functions as a slaughterhouse to kill as many black babies as they can. They use the government to not only get black women pregnant through pushing sexual promiscuity, but then reap the bloodmoney. They sow the womb and kill the child for the money, and grow stronger every day. The birth replenishment level for blacks is so low that PP is slowly killing their race off. Obama is assisting this process. He is a slow but sure Jim Jones to African-Americans as they let PP use black womens’ wombs as bloody killing fields.

Sapwolf on February 1, 2009 at 3:33 PM

Ed,

OT- could you please do more of the Palin posts? AP’s distortions are getting more ridiculous, e.g. the stimulus post.

Sorry to threadjack, I just enjoy your evenhanded approach more than AP’s trolling for comments.

cs89 on February 1, 2009 at 4:07 PM

This position is irrelevant. I never knew the current or any past chair positions. For those thinking this is more important than Colin Powel, Condoleza Rice, or Clarence Thomas and so FINALLY R’s won’t look like racists because of Steele.

THAT IS THE ENTIRE PROBLEM WITH THE MENTALITY OF THE GOP.

I no more identify with a northern black pro-choice Catholic than I do with the Democrats. In fact, most blacks are Democrats, most northerners are Democrats, most pro-choicers are Democrats, and most Catholics are Democrats.

The selection of Steele (the celebrity) moves me further away from the GOP than toward it. . . and I’m sure I’m not the only one. But you got your media darling token and can call it ‘change’ if you want. But the position itself is irrelevant anyway. . . just like the party.

ThackerAgency on February 1, 2009 at 4:17 PM

ThackerAgency on February 1, 2009 at 4:17 PM

The very fist step to fixing a problem, is figuring out what the problem really is…

IMO the GOPs problem is NOT IMAGE… its the fact that they lost their underlieing philosophy.

Many many Conservatives are not part of the Repubs, because they feel betrayed by the past decade. We gave the Repubs power, and they turned into Light Democrats.

They overspent (so much for fiscal cons).

They Grew the Government with DHS (so much for smaller government).

They took the Feds deeper into state controlled things like education (so much for Federalists).

They did not even enforce Border law effectively, and advocated for Amnesty for Illegals (so much for Law and Order types).

So, since they blew the whole philosophy thing, now they are trying to win the Image game… and play into the Group Politics meme…

They are allowing the enemy to control the battle… bad move…

Romeo13 on February 1, 2009 at 5:10 PM

Steele: Get the RNC Web Site Fixed!

Open letter to the eCampaign folks at http://www.gop.com

Alas, the GOP web site at http://www.gop.com has a few good ideas, but they are currently poorly, poorly implemented. The GOP has a pretty fair idea in allowing one to set up your own web site/blog at whatever-your-id.gop.com – however their whole platform is so buggy, it’s going to result in more harm than good. I’ll just hit the high points here:

So many bugs! You cannot recover a password, nor log in, nor properly edit your profile. Pix, videos and comments do not appear, and hundreds, if not thousands, of sites have been created by folks who did not realize they were creating a web site and thus have no content. This really hurts the idea of a myGOP web site.

Too many javascript prompts and error messages were written by ESL programmers. Improper English and bad grammar are so rife at gop.com that it begins to appear that the GOP would be pro-illegals. If there is anywhere that should be careful about proper English, it’s gop.com. My company hires offshore programmers too, mostly from India, but we always check their English before we allow the code to go into production. What political conclusions would visitors draw? What about setting an example?

MOST IMPORTANTLY: the GOP is pursuing an online strategy that promises to diffuse effort rather than concentrate effort, and will turn away experienced bloggers (presumably the very audience they want to attract) after just a couple of hours of effort.

Check out my website there, elronaldo.gop.com – I wasted a whole half day on this. The headlines section allows you to post only headlines from the RNC list – not headlines (or Gadgets or Widgets) from your own sources. The blog section will only allow you to type in an article – and not allow a reference or embed or object for a feed or Ustream TV embed. Sorry, I already have my own blog and I’m not going to copy/paste every article into elronaldo.gop.com – the one time I tried this, it did not preserve the formatting.

Now I am in the web services business (800Cart.com ) and I understand just as well as the next publisher the principle of ‘publish-it-now-so folks-can-see-what-is-so-attractive-and-fix-the-bugs-later’ as well as the next guy. But the GOP carried this principle way, way too far.

If GOP.com wants to have thousands of identical, lame ‘web sites’ to lower its search engine authority, that’s one thing. But if they want to harness the web/blog talent that’s already out there, they will allow Gadget, widgets, Ustream embeds, rss feeds and all of the labor-savings devices that bloggers have evolved to distribute their political thinking.

ElRonaldo on February 1, 2009 at 6:32 PM

Steele is going to be freakin awesome. We have the message, and he’s an awesome messenger. I expect big things, and quick turnaround.

therightwinger on February 1, 2009 at 6:36 PM

Okay, I get the “messenger” lingo. This is the same logic that brought Alan Keyes to Illinois. What the Republican Party needs is an antidote to the white guilt and identity politics that Obama and David Axelrod so skillfully stoke amongst the affluent suburban electorate, a group formerly affiliated with the Republican Party.

If Steele was the most qualified candidate, great, I wish him all the luck in the world. He will need it. However, if Mr. Steele was elected because RNC bigwigs believe Mr. Steele’s race somehow qualifies him to play the foil to President Obama and explain conservative principles to an audience that would not listen to a white male. If this is the case, I say the RNC has itself succumb to identity politics.

Angry Dumbo on February 1, 2009 at 7:06 PM

I watched him on Fox News and thought he was absolutely awesome. With the republicans in Washington acting like republicans and with this new party head, I feel optimistic again about being a republican as well as a conservative.

LaurieM134 on February 1, 2009 at 7:10 PM

I meant to say I saw him on – Fox News Sunday -

LaurieM134 on February 1, 2009 at 7:12 PM

Romeo, about the lightweight take I would expect from a surface ship loser. An underlying philosophy is all well and good, but means nothing without the commitment and means to actually get shit done. Ideologues are really, really good at jerking themselves off. Guys like Steele are really, really good at making things happen. You’re an idiot.

dakine on February 1, 2009 at 8:26 PM

He is the right guy to lead the party now. I think he will do a good job and hopefully will steer the party back into a position where it can attract support across the nation and prevent the party from becoming a regional also ran.

lexhamfox on February 1, 2009 at 8:29 PM

. . . The Republican party just prooved, that they are going to continue down the road of being Dem Light…. not truly a different choice.

Romeo13 on February 1, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Mr. Steele’s ‘big tent’ philosophy is a bit concerning to me as well, but it won’t hurt to have an intelligent, articulate, advocate for Republicans who calls himself a ‘pro-life Catholic conservative’. Mr. Steele will not be a shrinking violet, like other Republican chairmen; he will be out there as a major spokesman for the national party, and as Ed astutely noted, at this point there really is no other.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see him run for President some day, though if the economy improves it will be impossible to beat Obambi in 2012.

MrLynn on February 1, 2009 at 8:31 PM

Steele’s tasks:

1. Stop Franken from being seated in the Senate

2. Face time on the MSM to the point of near overexposure

3. Articulate THE CONSERVATIVE philosophy of the GOP. Teach it to all Republicans until they know it by heart. And then make them repeat it, repeat it, repeat it. (Maybe ex-Reps and independents will come to believe and return to the party.)

4. Identify and support key candidates for state and national election.

5. Make the rising stars of the party household names.

DrStock on February 1, 2009 at 9:44 PM

I read Steele’s blueprints for change in the RNC. If he is able to execute to as written, the GOP has nothing to fear. Bonus: if he can get routine access to Rush’s show, it would be spectacular.

And an aside: I have no worries about Gov. Palin. I am sure that the MSM is spoiling for an internal fight, and the ‘Cuda won’t fall for the bait. The House GOP members are just starting to get their act together, and maybe there is hope on the horizon.

Time will tell.

itzWicks on February 1, 2009 at 10:42 PM

Blacks give a second look at the GOP?
jgapinoy on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

Unlikely. African Americans are the most economically progressive constituency out there, while simultaneously being one of the more socially conservative.

DeathToMediaHacks on February 1, 2009 at 11:24 PM

But unless it’s on a ballot initiative the majority of black folks aren’t going to vote social issues.

DeathToMediaHacks on February 1, 2009 at 11:24 PM

Romeo, about the lightweight take I would expect from a surface ship loser. An underlying philosophy is all well and good, but means nothing without the commitment and means to actually get shit done. Ideologues are really, really good at jerking themselves off. Guys like Steele are really, really good at making things happen. You’re an idiot.

dakine on February 1, 2009 at 8:26 PM

Hmmm… Interesting… seeing as how I spent 4 years at COMSUBPAC, telling bubbleheads where to go… not to mention being flown out to fix their equipment, I’d say our typical Ad Hom attack was a bit misplaced.

Its interesting that you call me an idiot, when I differ from your opinion… for this is the EXACT attitude that is destroying any chance of having a reasonable debate on the issues at hand…

Typical, all verbage… all image… no substance… a microcosm of the current Republican Party.

Romeo13 on February 2, 2009 at 1:11 AM

There are serious problems with Michael Steele…

“I strongly support affirmative action” – Michael Steele (The Washington Post, October 30, 2006)

“You draw the line. I mean, what do you need an assault weapon for?” – Michael Steele (Washington Post, October 14, 2006)

“We have to elect moderates in the party.” – Michael Steele (CBN News, December 8, 2008)

Poptech on February 2, 2009 at 1:31 AM

“I am a Conservative Catholic Pro-Choice” Fox News Yesterday…

“I am for expanding the party with Diversity” in answering Chris Wallace on Fox New yesterday about why he supports Gay Rights.

Nice choice for the liberal Republican Party that I shall continue to have NOTHING to do with!

sabbott on February 2, 2009 at 6:15 AM

Poptech on February 2, 2009

These quotes don’t make me want to stand up and cheer for Michael Steele. They would appear to be the words of a man trying to be all things to all people. That only works if you have an MSM willing to hide your true identity. Doesn’t really matter that much to me anymore. From now on I only vote for candidates, of any party, who I perceive as conservative. Just being a Republican buys you nothing. Tired of being burned.

SKYFOX on February 2, 2009 at 6:24 AM

“I am a Conservative Catholic Pro-Choice” Fox News Yesterday…

sabbott on February 2, 2009 at 6:15 AM

Did he really say that? Because here’s what I found in the transcript from that interview:

“I’m a pro-life Roman Catholic conservative, always have been.”

Buddahpundit on February 2, 2009 at 12:15 PM

I like Steele, and think he’s an excellent choice. Even though he lost his Senate race in MD in 2006, he had some really good ads, and probably could have won in a slightly redder state.

It’s not yet clear whether Steele can win black voters to the GOP, although he might by strongly advocating school vouchers, which black voters strongly support. Even if he doesn’t attract black voters, his race IS an asset, because it negates the perception among white “swing voters” that Republicans are “racist” if they oppose Obama. Steele can articulate conservative positions opposed to Obama based on principles, and the “race card” is taken out of the game entirely.

Steele also grew up in a relatively poor area of Baltimore, and can probably attract URBAN voters to the Republican Party. How many Republican candidates have lost statewide elections by winning all the rural and suburban counties in a state, then getting wiped out 80%-20% in a big city? We need to do better in the big cities (even losing 40%-60% would be good enough), and Steele can reach out to those voters as few other Republicans can, except maybe Rudy Giuliani.

Steele will need to concentrate on rebuilding Republican support in “swing” states where Republicans have been losing ground lately–OH, PA, MI, IA, CO, NM, FL, VA, NC. He will need to meet with other Republicans and develop a message that works, then express it over and over on TV talk shows, and also recruit a different kind of Republican challenger to incumbent Democrats–leaning away from the “businessman” candidates whom Democrats paint as “robber barons”, toward candidates that have “gotten things done” on a local or state level (mayors and local leaders for House seats, statewide office-holders for Senate seats).

He will also need to work with local and state Republicans to win as many State legislatures as possible in 2010, who will be responsible for House re-districting after the 2010 Census.

Steele is an excellent choice, and the new face of the Grand “Old” Party. Let’s help him rebuild the Grand New Party.

Steve Z on February 2, 2009 at 12:54 PM

Blacks give a second look at the GOP?

jgapinoy on February 1, 2009 at 10:28 AM

BetseyRoss on February 1, 2009 at 12:34 PM

for the record, the RNC page on Facebook has attracted very many blacks, since Jan 1st. and, not only are they attracted, but they are engaged and very vociferous. And, they are very critical of liberal race-baiting blacks that wander through. I think Michael Steele’s success is a part of a general sense of advancement and involvement by blacks in politics. The conservative blacks may be the silent minority. And, as prop 8 has shown, conservative blacks are not a myth.

anti-boomer on February 2, 2009 at 2:48 PM