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Michael Steele: serial failure

By Lee Hockstader

Amid the gushing torrent of Michael Steele’s loopy remarks, bumbling mismanagement and unstinting bad judgment, an essential fact has been lost: His very appointment as head of the RNC was an act of supreme cynicism.

Let’s remember what Michael Steele has achieved before his elevation to the GOP chairmanship. The short answer? Nothing.

The man was a failure as a candidate for comptroller in Maryland; a failure as a consultant in private practice; a failure as Maryland’s lieutenant governor; and a failure as a candidate for the U.S. Senate.

As a candidate for state comptroller in 1998, he finished third in a GOP primary.

As a consultant in private practice, he attracted no business, went broke and couldn’t afford health insurance.

As lieutenant governor, he was regarded with open contempt by his fellow Republicans in the administration of the man who selected him as a running-mate, then-Gov. Bob Ehrlich. The one substantive assignment he was given--to produce a study on the state’s death penalty--was such a dud that Ehrlich’s office declined to release it.

And then there was the travesty of Steele’s Senate candidacy, in which he proved himself incapable of discussing policy at any level, made the ringing declaration that the election was “not about the issues,” and got stomped by Ben Cardin.

And this is the man the GOP then anointed as its national figurehead? Based on what?

You might say race, as have many other commentators, seeing Steele as the GOP’s cynical answer to Barack Obama’s victory. But Steele is also the embodiment of a particular style of American politics, particularly Republican politics, that substitutes good looks, nice suits, and back-slapping bonhomie for substance. Dan Quayle fit that mold and so did Sarah Palin in her original incarnation, before she became a brand by tapping into America’s deep dark well of paranoia and anti-establishment rage.

Now Republicans are in a funk that their figurehead is a loose cannon, a lightweight and a liability. But with Steele, when was it ever otherwise? The GOP got what it signed up for. Maybe when it comes time to pick Steele’s successor, the Republicans will actually do some vetting.

By Lee Hockstader  | April 8, 2010; 10:09 AM ET
Categories:  Hockstader  | Tags:  Lee Hockstader  
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Comments

Of course misappropriation of hard earned monies from base fanatic (supporters of defeating Health Care reform)it is business as usual in Washington politics thus, it is only small scratch to the high speed limousine being driven by RNC Chair Steel even thou, that it is more expensive to remove the driver than repair the dented limousine consequently, Steel is not going to be removed from the drivers sit so that Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh could be the next RNC Chair at least, with these “lame Stream personalities” the collections will make the coffer bigger in order, to keep the tips for the stripers more generous.

Posted by: carl1647me | April 8, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Many of us Californians, where the Voyeur fiasco took place, would like to know who the other two RNC members there that night where. Where they our elected representatives? If Steele is in the hot seat, people have been fired, asked to resign and quit, why is Steele protecting these two people?

Posted by: FedUpAlready1 | April 8, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Continued. Could it be because California is the biggest donor state for the RNC and Steele is trying to protect the image of our elected representatives so that we continue to give them/him money.

Posted by: FedUpAlready1 | April 8, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

With his track record, his performance is exactly what the repukican leaders should have expected. He is not capable of his
office, and he will not rise to the challenge which is presented to him in today's vitriol climate. Just as the GOP chose Palin, who was and is another failure in the integrity department, their
choice of this man was a desperate attempt to rival President Obama, and that is NOT
possible. He is one of a kind, and is proving that with each passing day. The poor judgement being repeatedly proferred by the GOP, in almost every aspect of the party, is becoming laughable. Steele needs to be replaced if possible, but undoubtedly the fools will just find another empty suit to fill the void. They
also are not capable of their offices. 208 days until SWEET TUESDAY!! The baffoons and their agenda are being hi-jacked by the Tea Partiers, and from the looks of the rally yesterday, Palin and Bachman are becoming the leaders. At least they are
convinced of that. Alas, they are just as
incapable. Kind of a joke, huh? We can
expect Limpballs, Coulter, Beck, and Hannity to run the country, right? Ah, how SWEET the primaries and elections will be.

Posted by: patriotgmalou | April 8, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Lee you don't know what the hell you're talking about. Steele was good for Maryland and brought some flair to the 2002 Ehrlich campaign helping him get elected.

The only thing that's a failure is this column.

http://www.examiner.com/x-3108-Baltimore-Republican-Examiner

Posted by: BaltimoreRepublicanExaminer | April 8, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

"Steele was good for Maryland and brought some flair to the 2002 Ehrlich campaign helping him get elected."

Please give one concrete example of how Steele "was good for Maryland."

We'll wait, numbnutz.

Serial failure perfectly encapsulates Mike Steele. Failing, losing, quitting, you name it, he's done it!

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | April 8, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

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