February 7th, 2009
02:32 PM ET
9 years ago

Steele questions if Democrats’ power ‘has gone to their heads’


Watch Steele give the Republican address.

(CNN) - Michael Steele, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, questioned whether Democrats’ power “has gone to their heads.”

In the weekly Republican address, Steele said of Congressional Democrats:

"For the last two weeks, they've been trying to force a massive spending bill through Congress under the guise of economic relief.”

Steele said Republicans are ready to work with “reasonable Democrats to do what is right for America,” but he charged the Republican ideas have not been included.

"Good ideas - lots of them - all left out of this plan by the Democrats in Congress,” he said.

(Full text after the jump)

"This is Michael Steele, Chairman of the Republican National Committee. Democrats have controlled both branches of government for less than a month. And you have to wonder if all that power has gone to their heads.

"For the last two weeks, they've been trying to force a massive spending bill through Congress under the guise of economic relief.

"All of us – Republicans and Democrats – agree the government must act to kick-start the American economy. American families are doing their best to balance their own budgets and pay their mortgages.

"The fastest way to help those families is by letting them keep more of the money they earn. Individual empowerment: that's how you stimulate the economy.

"But the Democrats have a different philosophy. Instead of leaving money in the family checkbook, they want to send it to Washington, run it through a slow and inefficient government, and hope that does some good.

"When families keep the money, they spend it, save it, or invest it. And the private sector economy benefits when families and businesses buy consumer goods or invest it for the future. But when Washington spends the money, some of it may flow into the economy, but all too often, much gets wasted.

"Democrats in Congress want a one-trillion dollar spending bill. You've heard about the pork-barrel programs they want to fund - 45 million dollars for ATV trails and removal of fish passage barriers is one that caught my eye. Exactly what is a fish passage barrier and why does it cost 45 million dollars to stimulate the economy with it?

"That's why Republicans in the House voted against uncontrolled spending. This is not a bragging point, but rather a statement that at least Republicans would stand with the American taxpayer.

"But voting 'no' is not enough... and Republicans have offered innovative ideas to help struggling families and small businesses. We've offered plans to spark job creation and investment through lower taxes, to stop the taxation of unemployment benefits, and to help Americans keep their jobs and their homes.

"The comprehensive Republican plan would lower taxes for all working American families. If you're married, the first $16,750 you make this year will be taxed at ten percent. Why don't we cut that rate in half to give instant buying power to every working American family?

"Good ideas... lots of them... all left out of this plan by the Democrats in Congress.

"Republicans stand ready to work with reasonable Democrats to do what is right for America.

"But it will take more than bipartisan words from the President. It will require fair-minded action from Democrats in Congress.

"Thanks for listening."

Filed under: Michael Steele
soundoff (775 Responses)
  1. kim, salem

    The view from here: What I see is our party rolling up their sleeves and really working to dig this country out of the mess that 8 years of GWB created, while the R's can only sit back and be obstructionists as usual. Disgusting. These people do not love their country, they love their corporations. Look where THAT got us.

    February 7, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  2. arona

    So, now are the democrats thinking of bailing out ppl with homes taking money from ppl that don't own homes? Ppl who lived a proper, careful life without buying homes (because they couldn't afford the ridiculous prices) are now at the losing end then. There's got to be a better solution than that. I don't want my money to go into bolstering people's luxurious lifestyle, when i myself can't find a job, don't own a home and have led a frugal lifestyle as long as i can remember. Geez!

    February 7, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  3. Average person

    Man...You people are dumb. Most rich people are democrats, and yet yall say that the rich are republican. That is an oxymoron and hypocracy. Also, The media is controlled by democrats, not republicans. These are just excuses from you stupid democrats looking for a scapegoat.

    February 7, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  4. lhammonds

    Mr. Steele you just don't get it. Where have you been the last eight
    years? Don't you know when you are being used?

    February 7, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  5. Peter North

    The GOP sucks.

    February 7, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  6. American

    Many of you favor the stimulus bill. I understand. Here is what the stimulus bill won't do. It will not make you house that you overpaid for go back up. It won't make unemployment go back to 3-4%. It won't do much in the way of new jobs for many people in industries that have been wiped out. Here's what it will do. It will create more government jobs. You have to be part of their union for that, though. You will also have to move to Washington DC. It will create more US debt. It will create a need for continued government spending, perhaps as much as 5 to 7 trillion in the next two years. It will create much higher interest rates as all that debt will hit the bond market in a short period of time. We will need much higher taxes across the board to pay the interest on that debt. Around 2012 many of you will feel about Obama what many of us felt about Carter in 1978. You are right to be angry with Repblicans as they failed to be the party of fiscal responsibility. George Bush and the Republican Congress were anything but conservative. Don't confuse those two terms. Michael Steele is a conservative. He will clean out the party and eject Repulicans in name only. In 2012, you will want to get the government out of your life, out of your wallet and out of your business. This movie will end the same way the 70's ended.

    February 7, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  7. Ant

    Mr. Steele,

    Tax cuts for working Americans. I am not sure which planet you are on, but


    We are losing them every day. Please take the time to watch Fox news when they report the job loss.

    So, your plan of tax cuts will not work because again NO JOBS.

    Why is that so hard to get that through your thick head.

    Probably because you have a job and is not worried about losing it.

    February 7, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  8. Simmy

    Nancy, Cal, you sound almost as foolish as Mr. Steele.

    He can make as many radio addresses as he pleases, he will never come close to possessing the qualities found in President Obama. And to say that "power has gone to Democrats' heads" is really the pot and kettle dueling.

    Look at him, and tell me he is not trying to imitate President Obama. He is so power hungry and envious of President Obama, that he can't even be subtle. It shows every time he opens his mouth.

    I don't object to a person choosing the party or his/her persuasion. But this move is strategically Republican. They are using him as a figure head. Limbaugh and Drudfe are their Leaders. You can tell by the amount of concessions made by the Republicans in the Senate. Rush told them to get as much in "Tax Cuts" as they won in election. They came as close as they could, with (42%) tax cut – they won 48% of popular votes. 30% should have been the cap.

    Republicans are against anything they consider helping the poor like "nutrition" (Food Stamps), although millions of people receiving Food Stamps now are those who have been "newly laid-off." They are also against education. I don't understand their reasoning for that. Maybe their kids are grown now, or in private schools.

    I dare say that somewhere down the line, the actions of the Republicans, will come back to haunt them.

    Just when I thought life was getting back to normal, and I was loving and supporting my President, I was dealt a triple blow. Palin's still around; her husband's now around, and Steele, a Palin-like caricature, comes on the scene. But anyway, life is still good. Go Mr. President, Go! You are THE ONE!

    February 7, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  9. Soccer Nana

    I see Michael Steele is drinking the Limbaugh kool aid.

    Why are so many Republicans so "verbal" concerning stimulus for the Country all of a sudden? None were verbal during the initial stimulus phase.

    When a political party defer to a pill-popping, radio show dee jay and an unemployed, unlicensed plummer for guidance there is definitely a leadership problem.

    The Republican are not "standing with the American taxpayers"; they are standing for the rich American taxpayers only.

    Michael Steele's election as the RNC chairperson is a "store front" position only. Why do you think all cycles of this election were used until he finally obtained enough votes to win?

    February 7, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  10. Sarge

    No it's not the Democrats who have let it go to their head it's you the REPUBLICANS who have done that. Senator McConnell said that we should not dictate to the CEO's who have received bailouts from the TAX PAYERS on how much their yearly income should be. Yet they are fighting the Democrats every tooth and nail to give them more money. Citi Corp CEO just flew his family down to Mexico for a nice vacation aboard the his private jet. When are the people who so much believe what the Republicans are saying going to get a BRAIN and realize that Americans are hurting badly and yet top CEO's and their top employees got a whopping $18.4 billion worth of bonuses this past December. WAKE up you IDIOTS and vote every REPUBLICAN out of office. Remember this when you are standing in line for food stamps and telling your mortgage company that you have LOST your job and now your going to loose your home......What about your children?????????

    February 7, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  11. FreeNLovIt

    The donkesy spend and they know how to spend it well, whereas, for the past eight years, W left 5 trillion dollars behind, where HAS all the money gone too?

    February 7, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  12. Jeff E.

    Gimme a break! After eight years of ignoring the dems while controlling the Congress, the White House and the courts, the republican chairman actually has the gaul to suggest that power is going to the democrats' heads? Wasn't it President Obama who reached across the aisle to republicans only to be stiffed by those same republicans?

    Perhaps, it's time for the republicans to remind themselves who won in November. Obama won in a landslide and dems in took back congress because the American people are sick the Grand OLD Ideas of the Grand OLD Pary. Wake up and smell the coffee. Rush Limbaugh is a gas bag who speaks to the far right base, but neither he nor his puppet, Mr. Steele, has anything of value for the rest of us as long they offer nothing but snide criticism and discredited ideology.

    February 7, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  13. Rodie

    I think it is time that Obama shows some leadership and forces the Democrats of the House to start working for the best interest of the country by working in a Non-Partisan way. Its time that the partisan politics of Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid comes to an end so that these elected officials can do the jobs they were electe to do. Time to grow up and stop acting like children like Obama stated in his inaguraul address. Obama could take a few pointers from his own speech as well since he acted very childish with his speech last week during his spa retreat with Nancy and the gang.

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  14. i love pork

    He wasnt worried about egos when they ran the show,oh thats right they are never wrong,I forgot.

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  15. Humphrey

    All of you Democrats that are whining and insulting Michael Steele are just plain racists!!! I thought our country had moved past this but apparently it left members of the Democrats behind.

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  16. sue

    Obviously, many of the comments are, again, from professional liberal bloggers. The repeated remarks about "the Republicans getting us into this"(the Dems controlled things the last few years when things went downhill), "He's just like Palin"(what????), and bringing up his race(the liberals like to do that, don't they?).
    And how about the comments "I absolutely hate this guy" and "I'm done with this guy". Why on earth would you say that? Hate is a very strong word and I'd bet the stimulus bill that the blogger that wrote that never met him!
    How much does one get paid to blog professionally? Is that in the stimulus bill?

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  17. Peter

    The Dems have gone crazy?! The GOP have ruined the country and Dems have the right to do as much as they like, who knows it might work *gasp* A GOP swear!

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  18. elsie

    So Michael how is that misuse of campaign funds investigation going for you. Why did you pay your sister $37,000.00 to her company after she closed it down for services she never delivered? Why did you pretend to be a Democrat when you were running for Senate in Maryland? There are pictures. Why was your sister married to Mike Tyson? Where is your wife? You will end up back on Fox as their token in no time.

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. Anna, ATL

    I have been a registered Democrat my whole life, but Pelosi's comment "We won, we write the bill" is a total turnoff. Everytime there is a shift of power (and yes fools, it will happen again some day!), the victors do have such a power trip, until their juice runs out, or things take a turn for the worst. Then the cycle starts over again.

    Power is hardly a reason to make decisions with other people's money. And the since the wealthy foot most of the tax bill, (as I think they can afford to), I don't begrudge them the right to ask questions on how it is spent. I would want to know too, no matter what my net worth was.

    February 7, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  20. Sandy

    Now we know where Humpty from Digital Underground went to. LOL

    February 7, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  21. Sue

    And the 16 billion in school construction that got cut Mr. Steele so there are more tax breaks for the same morons that got us into th is mess?

    February 7, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  22. Bebo

    That's it, play 20th Century political games Mr. RNC. This is precisely why your party has collapsed. Sing a new song.

    February 7, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  23. Drew

    We have lived through 8 years of your party's leadership and it didn't work. We are now worse off not only here in America but world wide. So get with the Program its time for you and the Republicans to sit back and enjoy the ride of the Dems...

    Honestly, I'm African America and I wouldn't wote for Steele if he was running for president.

    February 7, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  24. Dawn

    The Democrats have Huge Egos? I think not, You can't stimulate the economy through tax cuts how are you going to cut peoples taxes if they are laid off.

    In my Home state, Mayor Nutter is cutting back the fire department, and in Coatsville, there is an Arsonist on the loose, what is next, Police? well guess what it is bad for the citizens, but great for the criminals.

    Think about that one.

    February 7, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  25. obama all the way

    for the last 8 years it was the republicans RULE, look where our country is today, are we better off now than we were 8 years ago?? i didn't think so, it will take time but with Obama- Biden in charge, along with the Dems, we will see AMERICA RISE AGAIN.

    February 7, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
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