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. Action

    Republicans have no "good ideas" they are simply falling back on the old ideas that got us in this spot...Tax Cuts...Tax Cuts...Tax Cuts...tell me...what good does a tax cut do to a guy who doesn't have a job?

    February 7, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  2. Not another one of these Bozo's

    Mr. Steele you are opposing the stimulus on principles that have failed us…….we are losing our homes, businesses and jobs. Almost 600,000 last month alone.
    You had 8 years of shutting out the dems, funding wars started on lies and giving tax cuts to the rich. Well, trickle down theory doesn't work as it turns out either. Your has failed.The neo-con philosophy has failed. Tax cuts have failed.

    February 7, 2009 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  3. Liberal-Hater

    Sure,Drew,just be sure to jump out before the car runs off the cliff,as it will.This guy`s been a disaster already.We are in for a LOOONNNGGGGG four,or,God Forbid,eight,if the American population is really moronic as the polls indicate

    February 7, 2009 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  4. Rob

    Good God~ How can ANY Republican talk about ego. Remember BUSH oh yea the biggest ego on the planet. Remember the 6 years of ALL Republican Congress and President who put America in a BIG BIG BIG debt. Remember it was a Republican who appointed the Directors of the intelligence service or should that be NO-intelligence service who ALLEGLEDY gave or lied and BUSH put us into a WAR. It was under a REPUBLICAN Congress and President that Wallstreet screwed us as did the banks. EGO>>>>>>>>>>>How about shutting up and letting someone else try to get us out of this mess. Recall that it was Under a Democrat (Clinton) that we were in the black. PLEASE PLEASE SHUT UP.....

    February 7, 2009 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  5. ron

    This guy has to understand how ignorant the RNC is looking at this moment. Instead of trying to figure out how to stop the job losses they are more focused on Stopping Obama. Actually proud that no republicans supported the bill, at this rate after 2010 elections they just might start showing up in these numbers.By the way, this guy cuy is no Obbama, not even the o.RNCis in exile for what looks like a long time to come, thank God

    February 7, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  6. John

    I think Steele has some good points. Just how ARE fish barriers and ATV trails going to spur the economy back to health? Or "greening" federal buildings? I have a hard time trusting any government official, Democrat or Republican, to make wise use of the money that I send to Washington with every paycheck. The contents of even the trimmed-down version of the stimulus package are alarmingly wasteful, and the burden of paying for it will eventually come down to those of us who still have jobs.

    I do find it amusing and rather childish, by the way, that the people who claim to stand for diversity and inclusiveness feel the need to shout "racism" and "sexism" every time a non-liberal-Democrat female or minority politician begins any kind of ascent. Apparently they are all for diversity, but only if it suits their needs and fits into their mold. Remember, liberals, if you are not tolerant of other viewpoints–even (gasp) conservative ones–you are not really tolerant at all. And bipartisanship would certainly imply concessions on BOTH sides, not just on the right. Expecting one side to cave in at every turn and calling it "bipartisanship" is like teenager who thinks he is not spoiled, because he let Mom and Dad buy him a BMW instead of a Ferrari. The notion that the republicans were stifling bipartisanship by not accepting the stimulus plan 100% is pretty one-sided and childish. Feel free to retaliate, if you like, by holding your collective breath until you turn blue, for real.

    February 7, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  7. carol

    Is he serious, they are only peeved because they have lost their power and about time too? He needs to get a grip; I think the power has gone to his head if you ask me!!!!
    He is like Sarah Palin and doesn’t get that they were both being used as tokens .Still they are both power hungry so they have no self respect!!!!

    February 7, 2009 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  8. Mark

    Is that all the Republicans have to say? If they had been listening to the Democrats for the past eight years – we wouldn't be in the mess we're in... there is a reason why Dems may think the Republican ideas are not worthy – because their ideas have not worked for this country in the past 8 years....

    Don't the Republicans get it? They have to come up with a new tune for anyone to listen. Now if they really want to be bipartisan – share NEW ideas, don't harp on the same old song that no one wants to listen to.

    February 7, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  9. Liberal-Hater

    If Barack Hussein Obama had been white John McCain would be President today.Thats the only reason Obama got in,he never would have gotten in otherwise,with all the scandals this guy`s had,he`d been lucky to have won the nomination.That,and the fact the left has a corrupt and biased media on their side who will do whatever they can to destroy any one who DARES oppose the Messiah or Saint Obama.

    February 7, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. Robert

    Does this article come with a laugh track?

    February 7, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  11. Ben

    Dear Democrats and Republicans,

    Please stop your incessant finger pointing. The last 30 years has led up to where we are now. Everyone in the government has an ego. The stimulus is not going to do anything. The real blame is with everyone. From CEO's and government officials down to me and my small income. Everyone stop whining about who's fault it is and realise the we are just prolonging the economic state we are in because of the serious lack of proactiveness pretty much from everyone. Stop borrowing money you dont have. Stop lending money you dont have to lend. Get health insurance companies to stop driving up the price of healthcare. Get CEOs and their boards salary and bonuses voted on by their shareholders. Stop shopping at walmart and pursue products through community business's. Finally stop blaming the government and big business for everything and lets own up to our mistakes...all of us.

    February 7, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  12. SHONIA

    Mr. Steele,

    Please don't take that job very serious but you are just a puppet just like Palin. TAX CUTS DON"T WORK and how will it work without a job.

    February 7, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  13. oneinthemiddle

    oh boy ... people calm down! ... how rude you are of those you don't even know. posting a comment makes it easy to show off, but i wonder how many of you would act face to face?? you probably wouldn't have the guts to say any of this.

    thank you, Mr. Steele, for standing up for what is right ...

    February 7, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  14. Not another one of these Bozo's

    Mr. Steele you are opposing the stimulus on principles that have failed us…….we are losing our homes, businesses and jobs. Almost 600,000 last month alone.
    You had 8 years of shutting out Dems, funding wars started on lies and giving tax cuts to the rich. Well, trickle down theory doesn't work as it turns out either. .....You failed....The neo-con philosophy has failed. Having only Tax cuts have failed.

    February 7, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  15. dmott

    What a freakin liar. The removal of taxes for unemployment comp was already in the original bill. I could go on but this freakomaniac, much like Senator McCain, is not worth my time.

    February 7, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  16. Andrew in Texas

    Really??? This is the best republicans have? The new face of the GOP isn't Steele; it's Limbaugh. THAT's what is going to destroy the Republican party.

    February 7, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  17. Lisa, MD

    I cannot believe Michael Steele has the nerve to talk about Obama, Democrats what did he do the last 8 years nothing and all the sudden b/c he is the leader of the GOP we the people suppose to stop and listen to HIM!!! I don't think so he's like the rest of them republicans all for them selves. He can careless about the american people

    February 7, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  18. Patrick

    Eight years of Republican 'ideas' are how we got into the mess we are currently in. They need to come to terms with the fact that they no longer control this country, and that no one needs to placate them.

    February 7, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  19. Joy

    It appears that the "No you can't" crowd thinks that only big oil needs a break these days, huh?

    February 7, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  20. Karen - Missouri

    NO, it's the REPUBLICANS who act like spoiled brats. Tax cuts have never helped...every time Republicans throw tantrums about this it never works except for corporations and the wealthy...ever since Nixon days!

    It's the REPUBLICANS who are so COCKY they need to be voted out! I'm sick of the Republicans.

    Obama has gone out of his way to reach across the aisle...it's the REPUBLICANS who act like the universe owes them something. They are so disgusting!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 7, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  21. MIchael B

    It's certainly gone to Pelosi's head. I can't remember someone in politics being as intentionally divisive as she is. It's starting to rub off on Obama. I'm worried in the direction that he took. Pelosi thinks it's "fresh."

    February 7, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  22. C W

    To nclaw441: Giving a $3500 tax cut to a business is not going to cause that business to hire anyone – that's not nearly enough to pay for one employee. And maybe if American business weren't so busy outsourcing labor or hiring illegals on the cheap the rest of us would be inclined to be more supportive of them.

    American businesses need to show they care about their country and not just chase the almight buck.

    February 7, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  23. Ed Word

    That will be something the republicans are never accused of – having anything in their heads.

    Michael, you think anyone is taking you seriously?

    The only reason you got the job was to show the GOP isn't 100% white.

    February 7, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  24. DA

    All I can say is the nerve of any and I do mean any Republican to fix their mouth to say power has gone to some one's head!! The last eight years of Bush and prior to the 06 elections were nothing but a power happy group of Republicans in office!!!
    So Steele can go sit down!!!
    The best thing he and all his Republican cronies can do is work with the Democrats to fix the mess they got this country into!!!

    February 7, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  25. David

    I'm a small businessman, with employees in two states, not very big, but I've been in business for 17 years. I get tired of hearing people complain about OSHA, environmental regs and the like. Honestly all of us want our taxes to be less, but again, honestly my taxes are not too high. If you own a company you deal with it. Tax reduction isn't going to jumpstart the economy because we're all going to try to put the money in the bank or pay down debt, just like we did with the tax break last year, or just like the Banks have been doing. And just so people aren't fooled again, cutting capital gains taxes doesn't help the small businesses that actually hire and keep people hired, it just helps big companies that keep laying people off even though they're making a profit. The old Republican ways are both morally and financially bankrupt.

    February 7, 2009 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
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