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Steele doesn't mention Socialists or quitting in big speech

By Jimmy Orr / May 19, 2009

Michael Steele, one of the de facto leaders of the Republican Party, told RNC members on Tuesday that the GOP "is going to take the president head on" during a special meeting of the Republican National Committee.

MOLLY RILEY/ REUTERS /FILE

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One of the de facto leaders of the Republican Party, GOP Chief Michael Steele, gave a big speech today at a special two-day meeting of the Republican National Committee.

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Although much of the talk leading up to today's remarks was on the powerless resolution that would formally ask the Democratic Party to change its name to the Democrat Socialist Party and Steele's assertion that he would quit his post if he can't manage the money, Steele mentioned neither.

Instead, he told the faithful that despite all evidence to the contrary, the Republican Party is making a comeback.

"The Republican comeback has begun. It is underway, and it is not in Washington," Rod Marinelli Michael Steele said.

Doom

Of course earlier in the day, when appearing on safe ground -- Fox News -- the morning hosts flashed a graphic on the screen showing that in nearly every demographic group, Republicans have lost ground.

According to a new Gallup poll, 53 percent of Americans now identify with the Democratic Party while 39 percent identify with the Republicans. This marks an eight point gain for Democrats and five point loss for the GOP since 2001.

And then there's that really dismal Washington Post/ABC poll that shows only 21 percent of Americans identify with the Republican party.

"I may not know much, but I do know that our comeback is well underway in states all across America," Steele said without mentioning any of the states.

But he did say that he has spoken in 23 states over the past 100 days and could feel that "energy among the grassroots is strong."

Phony

"Too bad the chattering classes inside the Beltway are too busy fretting over phony disputes and intra-party intrigue to notice that a change has indeed come to America," he said.

In all fairness, when he appears on Fox News earlier in the day and talks about quitting if he can't "manage the money," he can expect some news coverage.

Or when he and Rush Limbaugh get in a dispute over who is the de facto leader of the Republican Party, that might qualify as newsworthy.

Tea bag

Then Steele gave MSNBC plenty to talk about when discussing the "real change" that's coming to America. The change packaged by the Republican Party.

"This change comes in a tea bag!" he said, referring to the Republican-led "tea parties" held across the nation earlier this year and widely lampooned by Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, and everyone else except Joe Scarborough.

Honeymoon

Steele also said that the Republican party is going to start playing hardball with President Obama.

"We're going to take the president head on," he said. "The honeymoon is over."

This led New York Daily News reporter Michael McAuliff to say, "We can’t really remember much of a honeymoon."

Regardless, Steele listed what he considered to be President Obama's real contributions during the president's first 100 days. None were complimentary citing the government's heightened involvement in the banking and automobile industries, and planned intervention in the healthcare field.

Shhhh

Don't tell Jeb Bush, but he also brought the R word -- three times (We won't say it, we'll just spell it out: R-E-A-G-A-N). Not only did he say it, but the crowd liked it.

You can watch the full video below.
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