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US Republicans elect African American as their new Chairman

Michael Steele promises "something completely different" as he is elected Chairman of the Republican National Committee for at least the next two years.  He promises to "knock over" all Republicans who get in the way of his attempt to take "the party of Abraham Lincoln" into neglected territory.  As former Lt Governor of Maryland he has a record of winning in a non-traditional GOP state.  He would have become one of the state's Senators in 2006 if it hadn't have been such a terrible year for all Republican candidates.

Politico comments:

"Former Maryland Lt. Gov Michael Steele triumphed over four opponents in the race for Republican National Committee chairman Friday, giving the party its first black chairman as well as a forceful communicator at a time of political weakness."

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire:

"Steele has been more willing that his four opponents to speak candidly about the failings of the Republican Party and the Bush administration. In a well-known 2006 meeting with reporters, Steele–then a Senate candidate—likened the ‘R’ after his name to a “Scarlet Letter. The American people faith had lost faith in our leadership,” he said Friday. “This is a new moment for our party.”"

"Steele won statewide office in Democratic Maryland as Lt. Governor alongside Bob Ehrlich.  They were a popular problem-solving team who knew how to appeal across party lines, reconnecting with centrists and independents.  They made fiscal responsibility, education, health and the environment, public safety, and commerce the "five pillars" of their administration.  They knew how to make government work on a local level – and such statewide efforts will be the route to Republican's resurgence in the future as it has been in the past."


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