Green Room

Steele: Hey, at least I won

posted at 2:41 pm on November 12, 2012 by

Look who’s getting a shot at a little vindication after nearly two years of criticism:

Steele led the committee during the 2010 cycle, when Republicans took control of the U.S. House. But he lost re-election to Priebus in 2011 after many Republicans argued that Steele had left the committee’s finances in shambles.

“What was the mess I left behind?” Steele said Monday in response to a question from The Daily Caller during a conference call organized by his firm. “Winning.”

“I get the Washington B.S. and all of that when it comes to trying to make me look bad,” he said. “But hey, the facts are the facts.”

Well, it wasn’t just the finances, either.  The RNC ended up with a poor GOTV effort in the 2010 election which some blamed for limiting the gains driven by grassroots organizations, as well as the poor fundraising cycle.  There was also the matter of the thousands of dollars in GOP-covered expenses at a Los Angeles strip club that didn’t exactly match up with the family-values message, too, and a series of public-relations gaffes that left Republicans steaming during his tenure.

Steele’s point about the difference between his treatment and Debbie Wasserman Schultz’ is well taken, though:

Steele also suggested that there’s a double standard at play, noting that the Democratic National Committee is also in debt but the committee’s chairwoman hasn’t faced the same questions he did about his spending.

“The DNC has, what, $15 million debt? Have you guys looked into that? Chairman [Debbie Wasserman-Schultz} has a $15 million line of credit. And she won. I had a $15 million line of credit and I won. But everyone treats that as if that’s a negative.”

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I like Steele, but he’s digging a hole when he’s using DWS as a standard bearer.

22044 on November 12, 2012 at 2:43 PM

Steele’s point about the difference between his treatment and Debbie Wasserman Schultz’ is well taken, though

Ok, point?

Its common knowledge that the press and media engage in this behavior.

Joseph Russo III on November 12, 2012 at 2:47 PM

We could’ve and should’ve done a lot better in 2010. Same goes for 2012(only to a far larger degree). But I did say in the Preibus thread yesterday that the dude needs to go. He has done a better job managing the RNC’s finances than Steele, but in terms of getting people elected which is the whole purpose of the organization, he was a complete failure.

Doughboy on November 12, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Right. I could’ve led the RNC in ’10 and won the races they did then. His problems were fundraising, pr (remember that blog he started?), and the fact he seemed to promote himself more than the party. Priebus has been far better.

changer1701 on November 12, 2012 at 2:53 PM

There was also the matter of the thousands of dollars in GOP-covered expenses at a Los Angeles strip club that didn’t exactly match up with the family-values message, too, and a series of public-relations gaffes that left Republicans steaming during his tenure.

Short memories.

I like Steele, but he’s digging a hole when he’s using DWS as a standard bearer.

22044 on November 12, 2012 at 2:43 PM

When DWS is your measuring stick, you have a losing argument.

conservative pilgrim on November 12, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Well he’s got a point.

Reeces Pieces the MISTER-ESTABLISHMENT-AYATOLLAH PICK had a real POOR showing last week!!

HondaV65 on November 12, 2012 at 3:02 PM

Go away Michael! Just go away! When was the last time Debbie Downer held a fundraiser in strip joint? Go away, loser!

Boats48 on November 12, 2012 at 3:41 PM

Fella, in 2010 we won DESPITE your ham handed handling of things. You know how many of our candidates were underfunded in 2010!?

Preibus may not have put together a robust GOTV machine, but he’s still a huge improvement over you.

As for Preibus, I have mixed feelings about him continuing on as head of the RNC. On one hand, he is good at fundraising, and it was probably a bit much to expect him to put together a GOTV machine that could match the democratic machine in a mere two years.

On the other hand, a lot of our candidates were HORRIBLE this year, and we need to know which ones had the RNC fingerprints on them.

Finally, we need to know who could potentially replace him. I’m reluctant to toss anybody out for a single shortcoming, and doubly so if I’m unconvinced the potential replacements weren’t any better.

Basically, I’m in no rush to judgement on Priebus, but Steele had his chance and blew it royally. Heck, HE was directly responsible for this years long bitter primary, which was at least in part responsible for our poor performance. That alone makes Steeles legacy irredeemable.

WolvenOne on November 12, 2012 at 4:39 PM

Gene Chizik won a national championship, doesn’t make him a great coach. Nearly anybody could have been the RNC chair in 2010 and we would have won, you could make the case that Steele cost us seats in 2010.

midgeorgian on November 12, 2012 at 5:01 PM

Fella, in 2010 we won DESPITE your ham handed handling of things. You know how many of our candidates were underfunded in 2010!?

WolvenOne on November 12, 2012 at 4:39 PM

TEA partiers handed him those 2010 victories. But Steele taking credit for what the TEA partiers did wasn’t what made me despise him. It’s that on quite a few occasions he was a guest on talking heads shows where a liberal flat out called Republicans racists, and Steele never countered. His responses always seemed to be of the “Yes, but…” variety. For that alone, I say screw him.

Laura Curtis on November 12, 2012 at 5:49 PM

I concur.. We won despite Steele being a moron. No Steele and perhaps we’d be rid of Dingy Harry.. m’kay. Also, the candidate recruitment is led by the different Congressional committees. The embarrassing Senate losses should be placed at John Cornyn’s feet. The NRSC has had a tendency to support establishment candidates in the past even when there are actually better candidates in the field. (Remember that young dynamic Cuban guy from Florida. Whatever happened to him?) That sometimes leads to crazies getting the nod.. O’Donnell, Angle, etc. They also didn’t encourage people who should have retired to retire.. Richard Lugar was 80. Perhaps someone should have suggested that he retire and spend some time with his family. On the other hand, give the NRCC credit. They were able to hold onto a lot of their seats this cycle. And there was quite a lack of Tea Party crazies in the rank. None of the House candidates were spouting off about legitimate rape.

Illinidiva on November 12, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Sure, when he wasn’t busy feeding into liberal mythology about racism in the GOP.

CrustyB on November 12, 2012 at 9:49 PM

Steele was an incompetent boob.

bluegill on November 13, 2012 at 7:04 AM

Steele was picked to take the 2012 fall…but then the Tea Party happened and 2010 happened and they took back his job so he would not get the credit for victory.

I am sure his skin color had nothing to do with all white Wisconsinites becoming the GOP front persons among GOP big contributors. Thinking that would be as offensive as thinking Saint Petraeus has silly affairs while the useless 11 year old Afghanistan death trap is supplied with more of our young human targets. That impresses GOP contributors too.

jimw on November 13, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Okay.. Steele was put in as an answer to Obama based on skin color. Priebus was put in because he was more tech savvy and had a powerful backer.. cough Ryan.. cough.

Illinidiva on November 13, 2012 at 10:38 AM