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. John Sachs

    Judge Sotomayor has been over-turned on appeal 3 times in 380 opinions issued. That's 80/100 of 1%. Limbaugh said repeatedly that she had been over-turned 80%. Another example of Limbaugh's lies and/or incompetence.

    May 29, 2009 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  2. Barbie

    "Slammin and Rammin"??? I am now 65 years old. When I was in college, I was secretary of our state Young Republican club. I stayed with the Republican party for years feeling that it represented my views. No More! This Republican Party looks nothing like the party that I was a part of. I truly believe that we must have opposite points of political views, but the "new" Republican party has gone off a very steep cliff! To let Rush Limbaugh define what your party has become with no one willing to really oppose him is tragic!

    May 29, 2009 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  3. peter

    Offensive is the word used here folks by Limbaugh, but this dude is a sick minded person with no sense of humors at all for whoever in this world.I bet he even had a family either of his own.

    May 29, 2009 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  4. Dominic

    CNN misleads the public again. The ticker for this story read: "Steele rips Limbaugh SCOTUS approach". The ticker suggest that Steele admonished Limbaugh, but in fact the story contains no such information. Why? Because it doesn't exist. Yet again you try to shape public opinion rather than report the news. You really aren't journalists. You are propagandists.

    May 29, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  5. JR

    Steele, did you get Limbaugh or Gingrich's approval before speaking, you know how it looks when you have to crawl to them and apologize.

    May 29, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  6. Florida Democrat

    Very smart from Steele. Rush is not the future of the Republican Party. Sotamayor will be confirmed. The court is too far to the right and needs to be more representative of American society.

    May 29, 2009 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  7. Steve, Columbia SC

    Excuse me, Mr Steele. The historic significance of her nomination is totally inappropriate to recognize. Regardless of her leanings, her "empathies", her membership associations, her "attitudes", she should be considered upon judicial merit and judicial merit alone.

    May 29, 2009 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  8. John

    If Steele is guest-hosting, does that mean that virtuous Bill is back in Vegas blowing another million at the craps table?

    May 29, 2009 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  9. JR

    What's black on the outside and white on the inside?

    A republican standing between Steele and Powell.

    May 29, 2009 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  10. mike,texas

    GOP=No,and America says No=GOP

    May 29, 2009 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  11. Steve, Columbia SC

    And to you Robert Gibbs, her selection is "offensive" to this nation and to our Constitution.

    May 29, 2009 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  12. chelseafran

    Dear God, they've gone so over the edge. These comments go far beyond any rational thought, it's just appalling.

    Shameful, simply shameful.

    May 29, 2009 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  13. Nate

    Limbaugh is a complete buffoon! Obama was raised by his WHITE grandparents...he's no reverse racist...what a complete windbag...and I voted for McCain.

    I'm pro-life, and my main concern with Obama (who has been an abortion-rights radical) is that he would nominate abortion-rights activist judges to the court. Sotomayer is as good as we (pro-lifers) could hope for.

    May 29, 2009 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  14. John Massie

    Rush is EXACTLY CORRECT!! The Republican Party does not stand a chance with Mr. Steele in the leadership. It IS TIME we did some slammin and rammin, because that's all we've gotten from the Obama administration to date. If Republicans don't start standing up, and standing together for their core values, this country is going to be unrecognizable by the end of 4 years.

    I can't even believe Mr. Steele's comment that this nomination is "historic" and thereby warrants a pass on severe scrutiny. For God's Sake, this is a lifetime position that could shape our country for years into the future and just based on the initial comments that we KNOW she's made, the red flags are already being raised. Maybe Mr. Steele should just go ahead and take a position with the Obama administration. It would seem his views are more in line with them.

    May 29, 2009 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  15. luan isuffi

    Why do we waste time.
    They both are incompetent, arrogant and ignorant MORONS.

    May 29, 2009 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  16. Jay

    "Steele rips Limbaugh's approach" the headlines says.
    You think maybe this is a example of why CNN continues to loose viewers. Your bias is too obvious.
    You guys love Steele when he disagrees with Rush, then you mock him when he has to apologize to Rush.
    You people (libs) run everything, why all the nastiness?
    Concentrate on furthering your agenda, your time is limited.

    May 29, 2009 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  17. john

    steele.....not a true conservative....she is a racist...who thought it not best to promote white firefighters because there was not a black one on the list because a black one did not pass the required test...steele sounds like a liberal...not wanting the best..but whatever or whoever is politically convinient ...

    May 29, 2009 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  18. Poor Rush

    When someone makes idiotic comments such as Limbaugh, it is best to speak out against such bigotry.

    Judge Sonia Sotomayor is a Hispanic woman nominated for the U.S. Supreme Court by the President of the United States. This is of historical significance and RNC Chairman Michael Steele has addressed that as it should be.

    Limbaugh is of times gone by, that are full of bigotry and hatred.

    Americans have grown beyond that and the reason for the election of President Barack Obama in November. Too bad, Limbaugh, cannot see that.

    May 29, 2009 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  19. Dalton

    Keep it up Limbidiot and you, Gingrich, Cheney and Tancredo will be the only people left in the Republican party. Maybe you haven't heard because your echo chamber audience refuses to see the reality of the world but Obama one by a huge margin because of idiots like you.

    The days of Ronald Reagen are OVER!!!! If the GOP is to survive it can't simply be the party of disgruntled old white men who want to return America to the days of Leave it to Beaver and Andy Griffin. We need Latinos, Blacks, women, voters under 45 yrs old and college educated white men.

    May 29, 2009 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  20. TexRex

    Keep it up Rush! The GOP hates you now.

    May 29, 2009 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  21. Raj from singapore

    It would be nice to know the ICQ of limbough, from his takes on various issues that i have followed since the presidential campain started (over 2years), shows to me time & again that his ICQ must be very low & he has hard time in getting the essence of a subject / issue.
    Surprisingly, so many supports him, as he claims to have a 20 million so-called followers that listens to him... Well that's a crazy & stupid criteria. If that has any real meaning & significance, then Osama bin laden has many times more followers and listeners( worldwide) than Limbough (only in america)..

    May 29, 2009 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  22. Doug

    Tell em Steele...kick them hillbillies out your party and force them to form the KKK alliance cause that's where they deserve to be with people like them self's burning crosses.... They are nothing but...TRASH!

    May 29, 2009 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  23. John

    Steele says "no slammin and rammin" of Sotomayor....

    What a laugh.

    Given the history of the GOP and its lapdog wingnut media, good luck with that Mr. Steele.

    May 29, 2009 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  24. Lance Anderson

    Ahh, good ole Rush! He'll say anything for $35 mil a year!

    May 29, 2009 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  25. Chenna Benna

    Oh Steele. Haven't you gotten it yet. Republicans don't listen to you, they listen to Lord Limbaugh.

    May 29, 2009 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
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