For some reason, Republicans keep letting RNC chairman Michael Steele near live microphones. Today, while guest hosting the Bill Bennett radio show, Steele said that he is working on a new game plan that will address issues in the black community by creating a “hip-hop storm” for the GOP.
In response to a question about why he isn’t reaching out of black voters through a African-American media, Steele said, “I’m working up a little game plan for the fall that would allow me to spend some time on a number of BET channels as well as Radio One Kathy Hughes, her network. And to actually visit some of these colleges and universities and have a conversation.”
He continued, “What it’s about right now is your health care, ability for you to run a small business and grow it to a major business. Defining wealth in America. What I like to call creating legacy wealth that is generational. Empowering you to put your kids in schools that actually educate them as opposed to dumb them down to go out and be, you know, not very productive members of society.”
Steele then promised a hip-hop storm, “So, you know, these are important conversations to have. I’ve just been struck by the fact that this president has not addressed those issues in a meaningful way, in the black community especially. So, I’m looking forward to doing that and causing a little hip hop storm, if you will.”
I think it now clear that the point of putting Michael Steele in charge of the RNC was to give the party someone to go out there and get some African-American votes. This is the same strategy that Republicans tried when the put Palin on the ticket last year. Women and African Americans are not going to vote for a party, just because they put a token face up front. Instead of insulting their intelligence, the GOP would be better off trying to appeal to it.
With his talk of hip-hop storms, Michael Steele is a caricature. The problem isn’t that Republicans weren’t on BET. It is that the GOP has ignored fundamental issues that matter to minority community. A hip hop strategy would only serve alienate and annoy, older white Republicans. It would hurt the party with its base, and not win many votes. It is a shallow concept from a powerless leader.