The Steele Decision

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Dec. 13 2010 9:21 AM

The Steele Decision

There is no real pushback from the RNC on this Fox News report claiming that Michael Steele will tell RNC members that he's not seeking a second term. If it pans out, it's been telegraphed for weeks, as the field to replace Steele has expanded and no one -- really, no one -- has rushed forward to defend him. As of Sunday, 26 of the RNC's 168 voting members had backed a candidate other than Steele for chairman. That didn't start to count the potential support for Maria Cino , who had courted establishment support before entering the race officially this weekend. But the best indicator of problems for Steele was the low profile he's kept in December. He has given few interviews. He skipped a FreedomWorks-sponsored candidate forum. He was not out front of bad financial reports -- $15 million of debt -- that had been previewed by RNC treasurer Randy Pullen before the reports were released.

What struck me earlier this month, at the FreedomWorks-Republican Conservative Caucus forum, was how little Steele played in to discussions of the future of the RNC. The man wasn't onstage, but no one criticized him by name, and the knocks on his management of the RNC were very matter-of-fact -- no burrowing into specific scandals. The impression was of a group of people squinting to pretend something wasn't there.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 


Frame Game

Hard Knocks

I was hit by a teacher in an East Texas public school. It taught me nothing.

Yes, Black Families Tend to Spank More. That Doesn’t Mean It’s Good for Black Kids.

Why Greenland’s “Dark Snow” Should Worry You

If You’re Outraged by the NFL, Follow This Satirical Blowhard on Twitter

The Best Way to Organize Your Fridge


The GOP’s Focus on Fake Problems

Why candidates like Scott Walker are building campaigns on drug tests for the poor and voter ID laws.

Sports Nut

Giving Up on Goodell

How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.

Iran and the U.S. Are Allies Against ISIS but Aren’t Ready to Admit It Yet

Farewell! Emily Bazelon on What She Will Miss About Slate.

  News & Politics
Sept. 16 2014 4:08 PM More Than Scottish Pride Scotland’s referendum isn’t about nationalism. It’s about a system that failed, and a new generation looking to take a chance on itself. 
Sept. 16 2014 4:16 PM The iPhone 6 Marks a Fresh Chance for Wireless Carriers to Kill Your Unlimited Data
The Eye
Sept. 16 2014 12:20 PM These Outdoor Cat Shelters Have More Style Than the Average Home
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 15 2014 3:31 PM My Year As an Abortion Doula
  Slate Plus
Slate Plus Video
Sept. 16 2014 2:06 PM A Farewell From Emily Bazelon The former senior editor talks about her very first Slate pitch and says goodbye to the magazine.
Brow Beat
Sept. 16 2014 5:07 PM One Comedy Group Has the Perfect Idea for Ken Burns’ Next Project
Future Tense
Sept. 16 2014 1:48 PM Why We Need a Federal Robotics Commission
  Health & Science
Sept. 16 2014 4:09 PM It’s All Connected What links creativity, conspiracy theories, and delusions? A phenomenon called apophenia.
Sports Nut
Sept. 15 2014 9:05 PM Giving Up on Goodell How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.