Just when it seemed that the Republican Party was headed for a complete overhaul of the joke that calls itself the US Congress, a half-handful of GOP insiders has risen up in high dudgeon attempting to divide the party against itself before the fall elections.
The target of these "inside-the-beltway" malcontents is none other than GOP National Chairman Michael Steele.
A so-far mostly anonymous group, referred to by Chris Wallace on FOX News Sunday today as "GOP staff" are ticked off at Steele because he accepted speaking fees at non-party functions, and he wrote a book outlining how to bring the party and the country back from the brink without asking for input from his critics.
Steele's "crime" appears to be that he didn't ask permission to act like a chairman, as well as an independently thinking businessman.
Illegitimi non carborundum!
I wonder if the fact that he is a black man has anything to do with this anonymous criticism? What's the matter boys, doesn't Mr. Steele know "his place?" I do. It's right up in front of the national Republican Party and anyone who doesn't like that can stop hiding behind their staffers' skirts, stand up and speak up - in public - or as Mr. Steele advised several times this week, "shut up!"
That doesn't seem likely from at least half the sources of the criticism directed at Steele. According to the Washington Post, "three top GOP congressional aides ... would only describe their bosses' communications with the Republican National Committee chairman on condition of anonymity."
So at least half of the malcontents apparently are aides to "top" Congressional Republicans, who are posing as representatives of the entire Republican Party.
I have a question. Are these "aides" working for blowhards, spendthrifts or maybe even a pervert or two? After all, such is the nature - in one incarnation or another - of many of the existing GOP members of Congress. Are they the frontmen for the same people who drove the GOP into a chasm of disrespect and despair?
If so I agree once again with Steele's reply to their puling comments. "Shut up!"
Steele, said on FNS today that he made more than 400 appearances as party chairman in the nearly a year since his election, averaging better than one a day. Steele also said he made a dozen non-party speeches last year, some of which were paid events and some were not. So?
This is the party of business, right? George W. Bush said as much when he was president. But we're going to blast our own chairman for doing business, none of which apparently interfered with his duties as chairman?
Are these people serious? I guess not, and from this oh-so-timely eruption of "criticism" we further get a really good idea of why the party was in such disarray before Steele came on board. Can you honestly disagree with Steele for charting his own course when the people who preceded him did such a lousy job?
The Post also reported that Republican Congressional staffers are trying to get Republican Party staffers to get Steele on track, on message, in other words to say what they want him to say instead of what he believes. Sorry about that Charlies. If you don't have a winning record, and the current makeup of the GOP in Congress has anything but, then you don't get to make the rules. (My staff can beat your staff with one staff tied behind their backs?)
All in all I've only seen three of Steele's critics named. All three just happen to be former RNC Chairmen, which isn't something I'd brag about considering the state of the party in Congress, not to mention the public view of it. Of course they have a right to complain, but I think the media also has an obligation to give us some background into who they are, and especially their "records" when running the party and working as official lapdogs to the Democrats.
I have a few questions for those who are criticizing Mr. Steele, especially anonymously. Does he believe in smaller government? Does he believe in less government intrusion? Does he believe in lower taxes as a means to stimulate small business, big business and in-between business? Does he believe in lower taxes as a means of giving more people more control over their own finances? Does he believe in personal responsibility rather than government control over increasing amounts of our lives? Does he believe in a strong national defense and taking the War on Terror to the terrorists rather than letting them bring it to us?
I believe the answer to all of these questions is yes. Which means the Chairman is a Republican and doing what a chairman should be doing to bring our point of view to prevail. If he is more honest than some would prefer, if he says things that some believe don't reflect the best public relations approach, then disagree him like men and women of character, in his office, where these conversations should be taking place, and hash out your differences.
But going out in public on one hand, and hiding behind a cloak of anonymity on the other, is not only disrespectful and counterproductive for the overall good of the party, it is cowardly.
Wallace said "GOP staffers" are calling Steele a "loose cannon."
I disagree totally. If he is in fact a cannon, then the problem these "staffers" have is that he isn't letting them aim it. He is the man who is deciding where his fire will be directed, and apparently, some of that fire is coming uncomfortably close to people who say they are Republicans but are standing alongside the Democrats.
If I was chairman Steele I'd keep right on doing what he's doing.
When he was elected last January, Mr. Steele said he would prefer that as Republicans we concentrate on the 80 percent of things we agree about, rather than the 20 percent we don't. I don't know if I agree with Steele on 80 percent of the issues facing us or only 20 percent, but I do know that he is out in front of the party, leading by example, and working day and night to reverse the Roman-Empire like decline of the United States of America.
Unless and until I see otherwise, I'm sticking with the man who is upfront and unafraid, not the six critics who have the temerity to claim they are speaking for the entirety of the Republican Party. Thus far I see Michael Steele doing the party's business. The problem a few people seem to have is that he is not doing the party's business as usual.
And if I had any advice for the chairman it would go something like this: Illegitimi non carborundum!
Sunday, January 10, 2010