March 23rd, 2010
06:22 PM ET
4 years ago

Steele defends 'Fire Pelosi' Web page

 Michael Steele is on the defense after a controversial depiction of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared on the RNC website.
Michael Steele is on the defense after a controversial depiction of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared on the RNC website.

(CNN) – Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele is defending his decision to picture House Speaker Nancy Pelosi surrounded by flames on his organization's Web site alongside the phrase: "Fire Pelosi."

"Actually, I tamed it down," Steele responded when asked Tuesday on CBS if the Web site's depiction was "a little bit extreme."

Steele countered: "The reality of it is I don't know why you're surprised. Nancy Pelosi is the architect of the demise of one-sixth of our economy. She should be fired for her failure to serve the interests of the American people."

The RNC also emphasizes that "40 Seats Means No More Madam Speaker," and aims to raise over $1 million in the first 40 hours since the health reform measure was passed. The RNC said it has raised close to $912,000. Republicans need a net win of 40 House seats in the November midterm elections to regain control of the chamber.

"This administration and this Congress thumbed their nose at the American people over the last year – countless town halls, Tea Party events, 30,000 people on the Mall the day that they're signing this bill saying 'Don't do this.' They did not listen. Their arrogance knows no bounds," Steele also said.

The chairman's comments come the same day President Obama will sign the sweeping health care reform legislation into law at the White House. The president will then hit the road to sell the measure to a still-skeptical public, giving a speech Thursday in Iowa City, Iowa, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said.

The bill, which constitutes the biggest expansion of federal health care guarantees in more than four decades, passed the House of Representatives late Sunday night with no Republican support. It was approved by the Senate in December.

In his comments Tuesday, Steele predicted public opinion will definitively turn against the bill when its details are further revealed.

"This government knows no bounds," he said. "And I think there's a lot in this bill yet to be revealed when the American people. And when it's further revealed, it will be less liked."

"When you were a kid and you had to get the needle and before you got the needle, the doctor put a nice juicy lollipop in front of you and said, 'Here's a lollipop!' and he hits you with the needle," Steele also said. "And that's what's going to happen here."


Filed under: Michael Steele • Nancy Pelosi • Popular Posts • RNC
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Noreen Martin

    What do these sick, twisted, toxic Republicans have against the American middle class?

    March 23, 2010 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  2. Dar

    She should feel right a home with all the flames around her.:)

    March 23, 2010 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  3. Anonymous

    Good metaphor, Steele. What did the needle do? Immunized against disease, improved general health, prevented pandemics, and saved millions of lives. :)

    March 23, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  4. kent

    This is sick. It is a bad way to conduct politics on either side. I believe that the House and Senate are serving their American (U.S.) public and are not hate mongers like Steele and others tend to be. Why do Republicans get to cut taxes AND wage two wars? That was the fastest increase in our federal spending in the history of this country. All this while the economy was showing sure signs of heading south......but did the Republican party pay any attention? Nope......too busy hurling lies and snickering about how moronic it was.....just a bunch of thugs. No better.

    March 23, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  5. Doug,lib jersey

    From Democrats who made and supported movies about killing president Bush, lib will be lib.

    March 23, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  6. Katie

    "40 seats means no more Madam Speaker" – the Repubs would never appoint a woman to be their speaker if they gain a majority in November. Here's hoping that they don't. Thanks Nancy Pelosi for your leadership and getting this bill passed which means my daughter will be covered by my employer's insurance policy while she attends law school.

    March 23, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  7. Emmanuel Goldstein

    Republicans crying socialism are off base. We haven't seen real socialism in this country.

    Not yet. Not until the bills start coming due. That is when the have-nots will go after the remaining wealth of the haves (which may explain why expatriations have skyrocketed in the last year). Unfettered democracy will always lead to socialism; its just a matter of degree, and right now, we are not as far along as we will be in the future.

    I have some old pre-revolution Czarist Russian Bonds. They are worthless as the communists abrogated czarist debt when they took over. All the coupons after October 1918 are still attached.
    I wonder if treasuries will face the same fate?

    March 23, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  8. Texas Doc

    And the Republicans have done what for Americans.........ever? Hmm. Oh yeah, they are against stuff and like to say no.

    March 23, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  9. Interesting comment

    "When you were a kid and you had to get the needle and before you got the needle, the doctor put a nice juicy lollipop in front of you and said, 'Here's a lollipop!' and he hits you with the needle," Steele also said. "And that's what's going to happen here."

    You might not have wanted it, and you might not have liked it, but that needle was good for you. I have a friend who made his daughter say "Thank you" to the nurse while in tears after getting her shot.

    March 23, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  10. Tim

    Steele needs to get a grip on his party, which means stopping this kind of hateful, childish nonsense. I wouldn't let my kids do this to someone on the Internet, so why should we let Steele? It's time for our elected officials to start acting like adults and leaders.

    March 23, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  11. Paul

    Bitter weasels. Period.

    March 23, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  12. Jack in Des Moines

    This is hardly shocking or unexpected in our current state of politics in America. Generally speaking, we have made rude and intollerant behavior socially acceptable and even "cool" in America over the past few years – even celebrating it in a plethora of "reality" tv shows.

    March 23, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  13. Rival Church

    I think the Speaker has served the American people far beyond anything the Republican party has (not) tried to do.

    March 23, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. OhDearGod

    Actually, I always got the lollipop after the shot. I suppose that doesn't fit Steele's agenda though. Idiot.

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  15. Joan

    The Republicans may find that their vicious and unrelenting acts to try and repeal this health bill may completely backfire on them. Once sensible Republican Americans find out how this is going to personally help them they may decide that it's not so bad after all. I'm sure that there are many young Republican families with a child with diabetes, cystic fibrosis or some other condition that will be covered under this bill. Seniors will get a cut on their prescription drugs and people who would have been cut off because they get sick can't be denied coverage. The list goes on and on. This is a bill for the people, Democrats and Republicans, and no one can deny that. This "Scrooge" act by the Republican leaders might just turn out to be their "Waterloo". Wouldn't that be karma?

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  16. sarah e

    "When you were a kid and you had to get the needle and before you got the needle, the doctor put a nice juicy lollipop in front of you and said, 'Here's a lollipop!' and he hits you with the needle," Steele also said. "And that's what's going to happen here."

    Steele could not have picked a worse metaphor. Health care. Wasn't the doctor just doing what was good for you? And aren't kids better for getting medical care?

    Steele is a moron, plain and simple.

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  17. GT Hill

    You don't speak for me, Michael Steele. I wanted and, am pleased with, the passage of this bill.

    Personally, I think Republicans are exactly what keeps our country from moving forward, in a positive direction.

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  18. mamaw

    I don't see anything wrong with the picture. We certainly see worse during election campaigns. This should be covered under Freedom of Speech, which seems to cover everything else in the world. I like the 40 seats and she's gone. Come November I will certainly do my part. I really loved the picture of her walking through the crowd laughing her head off that she pushed an unwanted bill through (sarcasm intended)

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  19. Buck12

    Congrats America, you elected Obama and now you have to deal with the consequences....and you all thought Bush was a power monger!

    At least on the bright side this pretty much guarantees a landslide Republican takeover come November.

    March 23, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  20. Dave

    "When you were a kid and you had to get the needle and before you got the needle, the doctor put a nice juicy lollipop in front of you and said, 'Here's a lollipop!' and he hits you with the needle," Steele also said. "And that's what's going to happen here."

    an interesting analogy. So he's saying that the American people are crying like children who are afraid to do what needs doing? (ie. getting the injection) And the only way to do it without them movinv too much is to bribe them?

    March 23, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  21. Kate

    This woman is a complet nut case. I can't wait to vote her and the so called president out of office. What a mistake the American people made. These people lied to us to get our votes. Now, they don't even care that the majority of the people don't want this bill. Well, you will see come voting what a big mistake you jerks made.

    March 23, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  22. Tom, Michigan

    The GOP has definitely turned surreal, to say nothing of outright
    inciting hate. Why is CNN afraid of confronting Republicans on this
    outrageousness?

    March 23, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  23. Lynda/Minnesota

    How very good it is to see that it took a women to bring the GOP to it's collective knee . . .

    Go Nancy! You be da one!

    March 23, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  24. Pete

    What? Republicans want English to be our "official language" but as far as I can tell, none of them speak it.

    March 23, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  25. Former Republican

    Steele tries to make excuses for an indefensible "extreme" by his own admission.

    The incendiary rhetoric from my former GOP has incited too much negativity among followers (i.e. racial epithets, xenophobia, bigotry, berating an American with Parkinson's, etc.). Truly sad.

    March 23, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
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