July 3rd, 2010
12:02 PM ET
4 years ago

Liz Cheney calls for Steele's resignation

RNC Chairman Michael Steele is facing another call to resign.
RNC Chairman Michael Steele is facing another call to resign.

Washington (CNN) - Another prominent conservative is asking Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele to resign, calling his comments on the war in Afghanistan "deeply disappointing and wrong."

Liz Cheney, a former State Department official and daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, said in a statement released Saturday that Steele must go.

"RNC Chairman Michael Steele's comments about the war in Afghanistan were deeply disappointing and wrong," Cheney said. "The chairman of the Republican party must be unwavering in his support for American victory in the war on terror – a victory that cannot be accomplished if we do not prevail in Afghanistan. I endorse fully Bill Kristol's letter to Chairman Steele. It is time for Chairman Steele to step down."

Cheney, a founding member of Keep America Safe, a conservative advocacy group focused on national security and foreign policy issues, is not the first to call for Steele's resignation. On Friday, influential conservative and editor of the Weekly Standard William Kristol called on Steele to step down.

Kristol was joined by former South Carolina GOP chairman Katon Dawson, who finished second to Michael Steele in the Republican National Committee chairman's race last year, and also called on the committee to oust their embattled chairman.

The controversy was sparked by Steele's comments made at a Republican fundraiser in Connecticut Thursday. A YouTube video shows the RNC chairman declaring of the war in Afghanistan, "This was a war of Obama's choosing."

"This is not something the United States actively prosecuted or wanted to engage in," he added.

That statement is at odds with the fact the United States led a NATO coalition with overwhelming public support to invade Afghanistan in the wake of the September 11 attacks.

Steele also appeared to suggest any conflict in Afghanistan may be unwinnable.

On Friday, the RNC defended Steele.

"The Chairman clearly supports our troops but believes that success of the war effort in Afghanistan requires the ongoing support of the American people," RNC Communications Director Doug Heye said.

And late Friday afternoon, Steele issued his own statement on the matter, saying that "During the 2008 Presidential campaign, Barack Obama made clear his belief that we should not fight in Iraq, but instead concentrate on Afghanistan. Now, as President, he has indeed shifted his focus to this region. That means this is his strategy. And, for the sake of the security of the free world, our country must give our troops the support necessary to win this war," Steele said.

"As we have learned throughout history, winning a war in Afghanistan is a difficult task. We must also remember that after the tragedy of September 11, 2001, it is also a necessary one. That is why I supported the decision to increase our troop force and, like the entire United States Senate, I support General Petraeus' confirmation. The stakes are too high for us to accept anything but success in Afghanistan."

-CNN's Alexander Mooney, Peter Hamby and Sarah Baker contributed to this report


Filed under: GOP • Liz Cheney • Michael Steele • Popular Posts • RNC
soundoff (238 Responses)
  1. Dave in Dallas

    No, Mike, do not listen to Liz by resigning. You're a gift that gives on going...for Democrats. Can you imagine what will happen if you do? GOP grassroot supporters, thinking their money will be spent wisely instead of at some strip club, will open their wallets again.

    Keep fighting the good fight, Mike, and wait till after November 2 before stepping down (forcefully).

    July 3, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  2. blue

    I do not agree with Michael Steele, but Liz Cheney's 15 minutes are up. She needs to shut her mouth and go away.

    July 3, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  3. Dan, TX

    Good grief, get rid of all the false republicans. Where are the adult republicans? Where did they go? LIZ CHENEY? Why would anyone pay more attention to her than to me? My opinions are at least based in reality. Where have the Brent Scowcrofts gone? Why doesn't Dick Lugar stand up and denounce these fools. Real republicans (you know the ones derided as RINOs) had better stand up or just become conservative democrats.

    July 3, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  4. normajean

    Other than being the daughter of a former official, just who does Liz Cheney think she is to be calling for anyones resignation. I don't recall her being elected to any office. I think SHE should resign. We'll let her know if she's ever needed! {Don't hold your breath}.

    July 3, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  5. Tom from Ohio

    At this point, I'd say the Republican "we've got a whitish-black guy in charge too" experiment has failed.

    July 3, 2010 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  6. Takara

    What the hell. Did Steele totally forget that Bush was in office?

    July 3, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  7. A choice come Nov.

    It is funny how the so called Elite far right politicians, elite far right radio show hosts and elite small leaders of a far right advocacy groups dictate on what the right wing should say or should not say wether right or wrong.

    July 3, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  8. J Richards

    I like Steele. He is entertaining. I doubt he can harm the GOP. They are good enough at it already. I do wish the Cheneys would move to that rotating apartment building in Dubai or wherever it is in the oil world.

    July 3, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  9. John Parksville BC

    A closed mouth gathers no feet.

    Perhaps something to think about Mr. Steele.

    July 3, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  10. mike

    Liz Cheney should be careful. Her father should go to jail for leaking valerie plaim as the CIA operative.

    July 3, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  11. Sofritico

    Chairman Steele is the gift that keeps on giving. God bless him.

    July 3, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  12. William Davies

    Oh, Republicans, you haven't figured it out yet? Steele is a plant by the Democrats.

    July 3, 2010 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  13. Debbie

    Ahhh Liz...is it because he is black? is it because you are the daughter of todays "Benedict Arnold?" You guys chose him as the token in response to Obama. Steeles what you chose now live with the results.

    July 3, 2010 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. Christopher

    If Liz Cheney and her fellow Conservatives want victory in Iraq then maybe they can enlist and go fight. Not every conservative has to be a coward like her father.

    July 3, 2010 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  15. oncfari

    Steele's proclamation that Afghanistan is "Obama's war" is just the latest round of misinformation and distortions put forth purely for political posturing. Both sides are guilty of this, but the GOP has elevated it to an art form! At what point are these people we elected going to put their political agendas aside and do what's right for the American people instead of what they think will simply make the other side look bad. I'm still waiting to se some positive leadership. All we have now is NEGATIVE propaganda that helps no one - and this behavior is certainly NOT a leadership model for moving forward to better things. It is simply wallowing in the negatives, which the last time I checked, has never resolved ANYTHING!

    July 3, 2010 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  16. CMG

    This is likely the only time that I will ever agree with Liz. Steele is likely orbiting another planet, and even the GOP sees it as a problem.

    July 3, 2010 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  17. Jeff

    Who in the hell is Liz Cheney? I for one am sick and damn tired of the media reporting news on these nobody personality. Hell, if that is the case. Jeff calls for Dick Cheney's arrest, and that the court orders a gag order for Liz Cheney big mouth. CNN find some real news. There is a republican party in America that is trying to destroy this country. Report the truth about drunkerd Boehner, racit McConnell, or lying McCain. Stop trying to divide this country. If America's falls it will be because the media seeks sensation, especially CNN.

    July 3, 2010 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  18. David

    "This was a war of Obama's choosing."

    Has he forgotten that GWBush started this war? Then dropped the ball? Obama inherited the war. Now the job needs to be finished. THEN we need to get out of there. We should never have been in Iraq but we do need to settle things with a few individuals who may still be in or around Afghanistan.

    July 3, 2010 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  19. Tom

    Liz Cheney is a "prominent Republican"? With prominent Republicans like Liz and Sarah I do believe that Obama will be President for the next 6-years!

    July 3, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  20. JohnVA

    Republicans seem to be having a hard time getting on message, whatever that may be. Limbaugh and Beck are the true leaders of the GOP. The RNC could save some money of they jsut let Rush abd Glen share the chairmanship.

    July 3, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  21. Hendrik

    Oh boy, now Liz is getting involved? So now they are going to force Uncle Tom Steele to step down. So who will be the GOP's token "black man" now?

    This is interesting.

    July 3, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  22. Frank

    Tom is slimy weasle.

    July 3, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  23. CGDoc

    I'm a conservative Independent and can not stand the current Administration. However, Steele's comments are absurd. Bush initiated the War in Afghanistan not Obama.

    This is why the Republicans have no credibility. There is absolutely no leadership in the Party.

    July 3, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  24. Jermiah

    The Republicans are finally realizing that nominating Steele because Obama won the presidency is not a strategy that will convince minorities to switch parties or support the republican party. Steele, don't you go anywhere! That's what those MF's get for nominating an Uncle Tom.

    July 3, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  25. HR

    Steele is as big an idiot as Obama – they both should be run out of office!

    July 3, 2010 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
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