3.02.2009

When Michael Steele is talking sense

I think I've made my feelings about Michael Steele clear, no? So imagine my surprise when I found myself agreeing with him. From Politico:
On the same night he was offering the keynote address to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Rush Limbaugh drew criticism from an unlikely source: Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele.

In a little-noticed interview Saturday night, Steele dismissed Limbaugh as an “entertainer” whose show is “incendiary” and “ugly.”

[snip]

In an interview on CNN with D.L. Hughley, Steele assured that he, not Limbaugh, was in charge of the party before saying that he wanted to put the right-wing talker “into context.”

“Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer,” Steele said. “Rush Limbaugh, his whole thing is entertainment. Yes it’s incendiary, yes it’s ugly.”
First of all, I can imagine that Steele doesn't like the idea that he's second fiddle in his party to a man that sang "Barack the Magic Negro" on his radio show. It makes it harder, doubtless, to bring that hip-hop sensibility to the GOP.

Secondly, it's probably not great for the party that Rush's stated desire for Obama to fail has caught on. (My mind still reels at the unbelievable hypocrisy involved in hoping for this, while serially impugning the patriotism of anyone that had the temerity to question Bush in the run-up to the Iraq War. But that's our GOP, ladies and gentlemen.) As much daylight as the Republican party (or sensible members thereof) can put between itself and those calling for the wholesale failure of the newly-elected President, the better for them in the long term.

On a similar note, Steele is clearly aware that the Democrats are all too happy to link Limbaugh's purulent rhetoric and the heart of the Republican party.
Appearing on CBS's Face The Nation, Emanuel brought up Limbaugh without being prompted. Applauding the conservative radio personality for being upfront in his desire to see the president fail, Emanuel went to great lengths to make the case that Limbaugh, more than any other contemporary figure, is the leader of the GOP.

SCHIEFFER: We talked about Newt Gingrich a lot this morning and now you bring up Rush Limbaugh. Who do you think now speaks for the Republican Party?


EMANUEL: You just named him: it is Rush Limbaugh. He has laid out his vision, in my view. And he said it clearly. I compliment him for that. He's been very up front and I compliment him for that. He's not hiding. He's asked for President Obama and called for President Obama to fail. That's his view. And that's what he has enunciated. And whenever a Republican criticizes him, they have to run back and apologize to him and say they were misunderstood. He is the voice and the intellectual force and energy behind the Republican Party. He has been up front about what he views and hasn't stepped back from that, which is he hopes for failure. He said it and I compliment him for his honesty. But that's their philosophy that is enunciated by Rush Limbaugh and I think that's the wrong philosophy for America...

Steele can argue all he wants, but Limbaugh's power in the party is pretty impressive. Just ask Georgia's Rep. Phil Gingrey, who made the mistake of criticizing him. (It didn't pan out well.) So, while it's probably not fun to be a Republican right now, it sure is fun to watch the circular firing squad.

4 comments:

  1. Speaking of circular firing squads, how's the Burris appointment working out? Chris Dodd's latest excuse for why he can't release details about his incestuous relationship with Countrywide? Or perhaps Charles Rangel's inability to understand tax law, rent control, and a host of other laws. How are all those ethics inquiries coming along?

    There is nothing funnier than watching supporters of the pro-torture, pro-corruption Democratic party telling Republicans how they can improve their game. Physician, heal thyself.

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  2. John, if you're going to comment, please make an effort to keep it germane. Otherwise, if you're going to keep flogging the same addled "pro-torture" claptrap, I will gently suggest that you get your own blog.

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  3. John is just one of Rush's may little bitches, anyone who calls themselves a dittohead is nothing else but. There is nothing funnier than watching little bitches whine. Republicans are, if not in intent than in actuality, traitors to America, God, and family if they listen to that aging fatboy down in Miami Beach.

    charo

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  4. Hi, charo! I don't listen to Mr. Limbaugh, nor am I a Republican. Nice to know your true feelings about dissent, however.

    And Dan, what's with the sensitivity to being labeled pro-torture? Mr. Obama thinks it is necessary to retain many of the policies of his predecessor that were widely described as pro-torture. Leon Panetta, Mr. Obama's choice for CIA director, stated during his confirmation hearing he would ask President Obama to authorize CIA agents to utilize harsher interrogation methods than the Army Field Manual permits if necessary. The Army Field Manual permits interrogation techniques that have resulted in "documented, long-lasting psychological and physical harm and were condemned by a bipartisan congressional report released last month, as well as by the Bush-appointed head of the military commissions at Guantanamo." so, wow, the current administration is willing to hook up the Die Hards and watch the prisoners dance, if necessary, of course.

    So I think that the pro-torture label is fairly applied to supporters of Mr. Obama, who could easily keep his promise to stop such shenanigans. That, or apologize for transparent double standard.

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