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Steele the Outcast


By John Martin - Posted on 12 March 2009

Or maybe it's "OutKast."  This is the new GOP, right?

I don't see how this Steele experiment can last much longer.  Just a few days after a leading Republican spokesperson chastised the Chairman for trying to infuse the party with a little hip-hop, Steele's feather-ruffling interview with GQ hit the newsstands.  In case you haven't caught it yet, it's chock full of tidbits that many undoubtedly would prefer the Chairman kept to himself.

On abortion:

How much of your pro-life stance, for you, is informed not just by your Catholic faith but by the fact that you were adopted?
Oh, a lot. Absolutely. I see the power of life in that—I mean, and the power of choice! The thing to keep in mind about it… Uh, you know, I think as a country we get off on these misguided conversations that throw around terms that really misrepresent truth.

Explain that.
The choice issue cuts two ways. You can choose life, or you can choose abortion. You know, my mother chose life. So, you know, I think the power of the argument of choice boils down to stating a case for one or the other.

Are you saying you think women have the right to choose abortion?
Yeah. I mean, again, I think that’s an individual choice.

You do?
Yeah. Absolutely. 

On homosexuality:

Do you think homosexuality is a choice?
Oh, no. I don’t think I’ve ever really subscribed to that view, that you can turn it on and off like a water tap. Um, you know, I think that there’s a whole lot that goes into the makeup of an individual that, uh, you just can’t simply say, oh, like, “Tomorrow morning I’m gonna stop being gay.” It’s like saying, “Tomorrow morning I’m gonna stop being black.”

So your feeling would be that people are born one way or another.
I mean, I think that’s the prevailing view at this point, and I know that there’s some out there who think that you can absolutely make that choice. And maybe some people have. I don’t know, I can’t say. Until we can give a definitive answer one way or the other, I think we should respect that.

I like the fact that the above will inevitably get people within the GOP talking about these issues (and I also get a kick out of how upset it'll make many of the hardliners).  The only part of the interview that really bothered me, in fact, was when Steele discussed his views on bipartisanship:

Do you think bipartisanship can work?
No. [pause] Look, I’m sorry, I know this is, you know, la-la land and Rodney King time and we all wanna get along, but that is not the nature of American politics. That is not the nature of politics, period.

I don’t know if refreshing’s the word, but to hear someone say bipartisanship doesn’t work—
It doesn’t work! I mean, I understand the ideal of it. But at the end of the day, this is a game of winners and losers. This is zero-sum. Your winning is my losing. My winning is your losing.

I understand that it's important to stay realistic and not get caught up in any pollyannaish hopes of what bipartisanship can accomplish, but I cannot believe that a person in Steele's position would see politics as a strictly zero-sum game.  If that's the case, then why do we need leaders like Reagan or Lincoln or (gasp) FDR.  Is there nothing to be said for making the nation better for everyone?  I personally think that ending slavery, keeping the nation together through the civil war, keeping capitalism alive through the Depression, beating the Nazis, and helping the U.S.S.R. implode were all developments that benefitted us all

Does Steele think that Reagan was good for only a portion of America?  Is he ready to tell us who the losers were?  I'm sure the party's faithful would get a kick out of hearing that one.

 

Hey, I called it and am on record.

He is a loser...and he is toast.

 

 I will not throw the first punch but I wil certainly throw the last.....President Barack Obama.

I suppose I should take this breaking from GOP orthodoxy on social issues as a good thing, but Ind is right: Stick a fork in him (at least, after the Religious Right finishes with the flamethrowers)-- he's done.
----

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

It's too bad he acted like an idiot. Some of these views could do wonders for the clueless GOP on getting voters and respect. Of course that would come with the price of losing respect and voters from the base. Independents seem to outnumber the base though, doesn't seem to matter. Also, even if he didn't act like an idiot these views would hurt him because of where the party has gone...
I agree.  If only Steele had serious convictions and then had the courage to promote them.  His views on abortion and homosexuality (as enunciated in his interview above) SHOULD be close to what the GOP supports if it is to hope for any revival.  Unfortunately, Steele is too stupid to know what to say or not say, and he is too cowed by the right wing to stand by what he says during moments of lucidity.  Way to go, Mike.

An Outcast or an Outkast?

 

EDIT: LOL, whoops. Serves me right for not reading first. Wow, it was even in the first line.

LOL....I'm glad you posted this.  I didn't know who or what an "OutKast" was.   Don't laugh....it's a generational thing. ;-)

Nothing to laugh at, I wouldn't expect you to know who they are. ( :

It's a generation thing and the fact that they are from Atlanta.

Yea, but John's from NY, and he obviously knew who it was.  Lordy, I'm getting old.....lol

Kind of a funny personal story about Outkast and "Hey Ya".  I was at the bar hanging with some friends and other people that worked in my building.  We were pretty lit and Outkast's song came on.  One of the girls that I just met told me that I would "get lucky" if I could tell her who sang the song.  I didn't know Outkast at the time, but I somehow got her distracted and asked some random girls standing behind me.  

Long story short, the girl lied and I didn't "get lucky" that night.   Somehow that didn't stop me from marrying her...

Those OutKast guys work their magic yet again.  

... but I cannot believe that a person in Steele's position would see politics as a strictly zero-sum game. - John

Too bad Dynasty's not still on ... he could play the boyfriend.

Well I like the things he said in the interview excerpts above, so I know he's in big trouble.  The socons are probably fuming!

Just saw these quotes over at Politico:

From Mike Huckabee's blog--

"Comments attributed to Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele are very troubling and despite his clarification today the party stands to lose many of its members and a great deal of its support in the trenches of grassroots politics."

From Ken Blackwell, as reported by TownHall--

"Chairman Steele, as the leader of America's Pro-Life conservative party, needs to re-read the Bible, the U.S. Constitution, and the 2008 GOP Platform. He then needs to get to work -- or get out of the way."

 

Funny how the wingnuts act like they want Republican ideals of limited goverment but they keep sticking to the radical social and educational ideas.

That's because they like to eat their cake and have it too. They want to attract independents while holding on to radical views independents, or should I say rational voters, do not share. It's not that they cannot believe what they want to believe, they can. But, they need to understand they can only get extremists no more maybe less.
After years of being treated like Satchel in this Get Fuzzy comic, I think independents and moderates are getting the clue that the Republican "base" has no intention of letting go of the positions that others find objectionable.
----

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

ROFLOL!

Michael Steele strikes again! My views of him are being vindicated again. And again. And again!

Rush for chairman of the RNC! At least, you KNOW where he stands.

 

I just had epiphany (I am catholic so I am allowed), I think Michael Steele has Tourette syndrome.

 

 I will not throw the first punch but I wil certainly throw the last.....President Barack Obama.

I believe he is sorry now that he dropped out of the Jesuit Seminary. He would have had a much better chance of influencing hearts and minds as a priest.

The GOP went stupid ... Steele is Humpty ... West Coast in the house!

Whoa! Steele really does look like humpty. Yes maybe we should give "humpty a chance". In any case, "I'm sick with this ... let's get stupid" from the GOP.

The man cannot even explain his position in plain language or choose a principle and stick with it. 

"For those who plan with audacity and execute with vigor,
progress is the magnificent by product." 

I like what he said in the article-seems pretty reasonable and along my moderate thinking...which means he's in big trouble. What I don't like is that he has no backbone. It's seems that if you want to make it in the GOP there is no grey area-you are either with them or against them. And it is truly sad. The Democrats have evolved and learned that those tactics will not help the party. For instance, when Obama chose Kaine (who is Pro-Life) as DNC chair, there were no major outbursts or drama about it. That's how it should be. I get the sense Steele knows where he stands on issues deep down but refuses to have confidence in his beliefs, way too quick to apologize-so we end up questioning where he stands. I'm sure GOP leaders are looking for any excuse to boot him out-this will give them ammunition (but they will be booting out moderate Republicans in huge numbers if they continue this thinking.)

I've had a very trying day, so forgive me for not being able to remember who said it, but I heard something today that made all of this insanity make sense.  This person said that the GOP makes Steele retract his words because they do not want, at this time, to alienate the base.  The reason?  They have serious fundraising to do, and the they are counting on the base for huge amounts of money. They feel they can appeal to the moderates later, after the money is safely in the bank.

Steele is a wimp for doing it, or he should keep his mouth shut in the first place if he's going to play the game.  Second, does the party think that the moderates are stupid enough to forget this dog and pony show by 2010 elections?  What a farce, and what an insult!

"Second, does the party think that the moderates are stupid enough to forget this dog and pony show by 2010 elections?  What a farce, and what an insult!"

Defintely a farce and an insult. It worked for so long they expect it to keep working even though the last 2 or 3 elections  show signs that those tactics won't cut it anymore.The GOP remains in denial.

I like what he said in the article-seems pretty reasonable and along my moderate thinking...which means he's in big trouble. What I don't like is that he has no backbone.

So you're saying he's a 2004 Democrat? *ducks*

----

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

This is all very refreshing to hear. I was skeptical about him at first, because I didn't understand how I could be supporting the same guy as Sean Hannity. Speaking of him, what's he have to say about all of this?
I thought when they put steele in place it was for window dressing. I still think that, and they are haveing a difficult time controling him. I don't for not one minute believe they did not know where he stood on issues! They simply thought they could control him better than this.
Like I said,everyday the republicans say or do something crazy. It makes me wonder what I saw all these years in the party. Now Minority leader John boehner says, "He as now advised his fellow House Republicans that they shouldn't thin of themselfs as legislators". "We are not in the majority. We arein a hold.They ought to ge the idea out of their minds that they are legistlators". If they don't do any legislation in the house of senate, or congress---What do the republicans do? Just appear and give a "NO" vote against every thing and leave? I just don't uderstand it at all. What would have happened in the last 8 years if the Dem's just up and said, "We refuse to help or give legislation, because we are not the majority at this time"! Why would we need them on the Job, than? Why would we need Republicans or John Boehner if as he says, they won't legislate any more or help with legislation?

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