May 29th, 2009
08:40 PM ET
12 years ago

Steele: No 'slammin and rammin' Sotomayor

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/05/13/republicans.family.feud/art.michaelsteelemd.gi.jpg caption="RNC Chairman Michael Steele said Friday that the GOP should recognize the 'historic aspect' of Sonia Sotomayor's nomination."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele suggested Friday that Republicans hold off on "slammin' and rammin'" Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor and instead recognize the "historic aspect" of her nomination.

While guest hosting the Bill Bennett radio show on Friday morning, Steele said he was "excited" to see a Hispanic woman in this position.

"The trap here for the GOP I think is enormous," Steele said. "And I know that a lot of folks want to do the knee jerk you know let's start slammin' and rammin', but I think we really need to take a step back from this and deal with two things, one, the historic aspect of it, acknowledge it, but then move on to the substance of the conversation about what this woman believes."

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh took an opposite turn from the party chairman, saying that the "way get promoted in the Barack Obama administration" is "by hating white people." Limbaugh also suggested that her nomination would be like picking former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke for the position.

"I think she's disqualified herself. Not only does she lack the often-discussed appropriate judicial temperament, it's worse than that. She brings a form of bigotry or racism to the court," Limbaugh said. He added, "How can a president nominate such a candidate? And how can a party get behind such a candidate? That's what would be asked if somebody were foolish enough to nominate David Duke or pick somebody even less offensive."

During his daily briefing, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called Limbaugh's comments "offensive."

soundoff (341 Responses)
  1. VOTER

    Steele is a HYPOCRITE, he is only trying to act "nice",because HE IS SCARED OF LOSING HISPANIC VOTERS.

    May 29, 2009 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  2. babs

    First almost sensable thing steele has said yet. let's see if he can keep it up or if Rush will pound him again. good luck Michael!

    May 29, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  3. Mike Berry

    Please quit referring to Limbaugh as a "conservative." He's an irrational, racist, intellectually challenged right wing bomb-thrower.

    May 29, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  4. Doug from Cali

    uh oh, Steele better ready his apology, the GOP leader will not like his comments.

    May 29, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  5. John D.

    Hmm, wonder if Steele will turn around in less than 48 hours and bend over backwards to beg forgiveness from Massa Limbaugh like last time...

    May 29, 2009 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  6. Jim, Honolulu

    Millions of moderate Republicans, including I, are horrified at the mean, vicious unwarranted comments coming from various sectors of our party. Indeed, the maliciously evil rants of Rush and Gingrich and Cheney are exactly what anyone wishing to destroy the GOP would hope for. In case anyone forgot to review the results of the last two elections, we are in danger of becoming a minor regional party. And as millions of moderates leave or ignore the party they once faithfully supported, things will only get worse. We've already lost minorities and the young for a generation; how much more before we go the way of the Whigs. MODERATE AND LIBERAL REPUBLICANS, TAKE BACK YOUR PARTY! The Conservatives are hell-bent on destroying the party and America.

    May 29, 2009 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  7. Brian

    Now they realize Limbaugh, Cheney, and Rove are the problem so let's throw them under the bus. Problem is you can change the cover of a book, but what is written inside is still the same.

    May 29, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  8. Actionsauce

    Michael Steele knows that the hispanic vote may very well be in the balance with Sotomayor's selection.
    Guys like Gingrich are living in the 90's, and still think that the old rules apply.
    Limpballs is honking his tooter to the same old tunes too, and this just wont cut it for the GOP anymore.
    I dont think that the GOP knows just how much they are being tested by the Obama presidency. They have continued on with their tried and true game plan, and we have seen very little different in the form of ideas from their spokepersons and potential leaders.
    Even true conservatives like Pat Buchanan are having a hard time connecting with would be voters. Ron Paul alone has been successful in energizing young conservatives to the cause. Only to be cast away by his own party as a "radical."
    It is time for a new and younger generation to take the reins of the Republican stagecoach from the crotchety old men who represent the Grand Old Party as a bunch of Grumpy Old Poopers.

    May 29, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  9. Slam on

    Ha, ha. "Slammin and rammin" is all you Republican's know how to do. Go right ahead. No one is taking you seriously anyway. We are just happy that you do not have control or enough power to make the middle class poorer and the rich richer. We are thrilled that, if God forbid, there is a natural disaster we don't have to count on an horse trainer to keep citizens safe. We don't have to deal with mediocrity and inarticulate speakers anymore. Too bad, we could not get the party of no (sense) out before you turned a surplus to a deficit and lead so many of our men and women to die and lose limbs for a war based on lies. So slam and ram all you want to. Your base needs it and you are losing the few people of vision and intelligence that you have.

    May 29, 2009 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  10. Brian, Albany NY

    In before Steele apologizes for disagreeing with the Grand Wizard of the GOP...

    May 29, 2009 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  11. Doc

    Is he for real? Man, there must be some serious buyer's remorse on the part of the RNC everytime this clown steps up to a microphone. He'll change his stance as soon as Limbaugh tells him.

    May 29, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  12. Rob R

    Laughable, radical, marginalized Rush spewing pea soup again...maybe Mr. Steele is smarter than he's displayed so far...

    May 29, 2009 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  13. Omentum

    Steele,

    Your statement does not hold water after they presently slamming and ramming ...... YOU

    May 29, 2009 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  14. Mark, Warwick RI

    That her nomination is historic does not make it good. Stop being a joke, Steele.

    May 29, 2009 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  15. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    No no no; what is this, a clown competition? No, this "historic aspect" propaganda is PC vernacular to exercise a subtle reverse racism. To be truly color blind is to refuse to engage in ANY ethnic identity labeling. Which would include official taxpayer funded recognition of any average citizen elevated to an above average government position of authority.

    May 29, 2009 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  16. Turnabout is Fair Play

    Slammin' and RAMMIN'?? Oh Dear God.. I..wow,...I'm speechless...

    May 29, 2009 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  17. Hawaii gal

    Limbaugh is such a jerk. He is the racist here, not Judge. Sotomayor. Judge Sotomayor is over the top as far as qualifications go, having more experience going into the Supreme Court than anyone currently serving on the bench. Limbaugh just does not like that fact that we have a multi-cultural Obama Administration. Too bad Rush, get use to it, this is the face of America. It's about time that the White House, and Supreme Court, as well as the congress and entire Presidential Administation reflect the ethnicnicity of our nation, not only rich white men.

    May 29, 2009 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  18. MsP

    I wish Mr. Steele would grow the hell up and act his age and be real. You are so PHONY.

    May 29, 2009 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  19. Hawaii gal

    Hey Michael Steel...stop dropping your g's, you are starting to sound as uneducated as Sarah Palin does and is. Saying things like rammin' and slammin' does not make you sound cool, it makes you sound stupid.

    May 29, 2009 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  20. Dennis in Orlando

    McCain lost the Hispanic vote 67% to 31%. Hispanics are one of the fasting growing demographic groups in the country.

    You mean to tell me that the Republican party is going to try not to seat a HIGHLY QUALIFIED Hispanic Woman to the highest court in the land because of what Limbaugh, Tancredo, Gingrich and a host of other conservative mouthpieces say?? Are you serious?

    I guess they like losin', LOL!!!!!!

    May 29, 2009 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  21. VAisforLovers

    It's rare that I give Steele credit for anything intelligent, but I'm proud to see him taking this stance. Limbaugh is so far out there that it's a shame.

    May 29, 2009 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  22. Dyolf

    It's all about race.

    May 29, 2009 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  23. Mike - Portland

    Rush Limbaugh is one sick man.

    May 29, 2009 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  24. MikeTo

    Is Limbaugh and the Republican conservatives trying to divide America? It sounds like he wants a divided and segregated America so that he and his buddies can sit in front of the bus again.

    May 29, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  25. Ethan

    This is the first intelligent thing I've heard Steele say since he became the Chairman of the RepugniKKKant National Committee!

    May 29, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
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