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Palin and Ehrlich sticking by Steele

The drip-drip of firings and ugly stories about the RNC has slowed today. Will that prevent every Republican politician from being asked what they think of Michael Steele? Of course not.

On the "pro" side we have Sarah Palin, who is "glad he is the leader of the party, administratively" and thinks that "it's good to have an independent outsider trying to create some change in the Republican Party." ("Outsider" in this case means "man whom some big donors trust as much as 3 a.m. infomercials on SpikeTV.")

On the "con" side, sort of, we have Bob Ehrlich, who ignited Steele's political career in 2002 by picking him as his nominee for lieutenant governor of Maryland, and who now knocks Steele's "burn rate" at the RNC while voicing his hopes that Steele can turn things around. "When you're asking someone for their hard-earned dollars, in a recession," Ehrlich told NewsChannel8, they don't want to see headlines about some bar."

Notably absent from the Ehrlich statement -- or from other statements in the past few days -- is any call for Steele to resign. That's the dog that hasn't hunted throughout this week. Conservative groups, even rival Republican groups, are accepting a status quo where Steele stays in his job and they go after disgruntled donors. And I think we'll get a better sense of this story in New Orleans, where the Southern Republican Leadership Conference is being held, and where Steele is making his first high-profile appearance before activists since this mess began.

By David Weigel  |  April 8, 2010; 2:54 PM ET
Categories:  Michael Steele , RNC  
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