January 27th, 2010
09:51 AM ET
12 years ago

Steele defends Hawaii backdrop

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/01/27/surfer.gi.jpg caption="Republicans are holding their winter meeting in Hawaii."]
(CNN) - As the Republican National Committee gets set to kick off its winter meeting in Hawaii, chairman Michael Steele is defending the cushy venue amid criticism from some Republicans that tropical beaches are not the best background for the party as the economy continues to struggle.

"A lot of folks out there relax, we're working hard out here, this is not a vacation this is a working meeting this is our winter meeting, we're here to do the business of the party and we'll get it done," Steele told local television station KHON.

"It's a chance to really kind of expose Hawaii to the rest of America. I mean it's part of the growth and the fabric of this nation, and I think it's important for us as a party to be here," he said.

Filed under: Michael Steele • RNC
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. KJ

    He is kidding when he says "it is a chance to expose Hawaii". Why not expose Iowa or South Dakota? The hypocrisy is amazing. But I shouldn't be surprised afterall they are politicians!

    January 27, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  2. phillybits

    Hawaii. The RNC. Imagine that.


    January 27, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  3. citizen AND BELIEVER

    Sure – since this is obama's choice of vaca land. What's good enough for the dems and their "leader" is good enough for the RNC.

    January 27, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  4. Dutch the Great

    The President vacations there. The SecState just got back from there last week. What's wrong with Hawaii republicans?

    January 27, 2010 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  5. rich

    Clueless in Hawaii!

    January 27, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  6. Steph

    They either don't believe their own rhetoric about Obama ruining the world, or they're so excited that their wish that the United States fails is coming true that they're celebrating with a Hawaiian vacation.

    January 27, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  7. John, Brooklyn, NY

    How condescending! Hawaii has some of the heaviest foot traffic by people from the mainland than just about any state in the country...a visit by the Republicans certainly isn't going to "expose Hawaiians to the rest of the country". What a Howlie!

    January 27, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  8. Another Reformed Republican

    It is outrageous to expect the Republicans to settle for less lavish surroundings in which to conduct their party rebuilding. The wealthy members of the party expect luxurious accommodations and the blind sheep of the party are too stupid to realize that the Republican party cares nothing about them.

    January 27, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  9. Tom Swift - Shopton NY

    " "It's a chance to really kind of expose Hawaii to the rest of America. "

    So are we to understand that Steele and the Republicans discovered Hawaii and us po' folks shivering our butts off here in most of the mainland shoud be grateful for their sacrifice ? Uh huh...

    January 27, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  10. Flyer69

    Why don't they have it at the several Guard Training Sites around the country at 1/8th of the cost??

    January 27, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  11. JerryP

    I see more hard earned tax dollars at work with the frugal Republican Party. Here's a tip! Spend your own money. SUCH LOSERS!

    January 27, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  12. steven harnack

    Yeah, Hawaii didn't exist until the Repubs got there.

    January 27, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  13. Steph

    Does Michael Steele think he discovered Hawaii? Here's a game to play today...please try to find an American anywhere in the US who doesn't already know about Hawaii. If you find one, please assure them that Mr. Steele and others in the GOP are working hard to get information about this hidden American treasure out to the general public.

    January 27, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  14. Valrie

    iI wish Michael Steele would just go away

    January 27, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  15. Steph

    Don't Republicans think Hawaii is a foreign country?

    January 27, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  16. El Kababa

    They could have held their retreat in a damaged city like New Orleans or a city desperate for jobs like Detroit. But the problem is that Conservatives don't give a crap about problem cities, jobs, you, or me. To them, the nation is divided between losers and winners. Prosperous Conservatives and Conservative donors are the winners. The middle and lower classes are the losers.

    Winners vacation in Hawaii. Losers don't get vacations.

    Conservative voters seem unable to grasp the fact that it is their own leadership – not "Liberal-socialists" – that is behind the deteriorating quality of life and increasing insecurity of the American people.

    January 27, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  17. Don

    Hellooooo we are back on the mainland going paycheck to paycheck and you fat cats are in Hawaii? Can you say " out of touch"?

    January 27, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  18. laurie

    If it's a "working meeting", not a "vacation", then it wouldn't matter if it was held in Detroit.....why Hawaii???? Who do you think you're kidding with that lame answer????

    January 27, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  19. genXerator

    And the GOP is supposedly sticking up for the little guy? Yeah, right! They represent the wealthy that wish for nothing more than pushing the entire tax burden of our society on to the working people so that they can continue visiting these lavish locations while many workers don't have the money to vacation in their own state.

    January 27, 2010 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  20. AEK

    Isn't this the same Republican hypocrite who was criticizing the President during his recent WORKING vacation to Hawaii?

    January 27, 2010 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  21. Lisa P

    They should stay in Hawaii. They're certainly not getting anything of value done here; in fact they're standing in the way, and just for the sake of standing in the way. If America is going to win the Republicans have got to go. Hawaii may not be far enough...

    January 27, 2010 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  22. Joe - Cincinnati

    You can't work in D.C. ,Michael?

    January 27, 2010 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  23. Jim in Idaho

    Expose Hawaii to America? Does Michael Steele pay any attention to the world at all? I suppose he thinks Hawaii is a new state that nobody knows about. What a moron.

    January 27, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  24. Elle in WA

    Steele is so full of it! The weather is nice in California too, and it's a state that is in serious need of help – they could have made just as much of a statement by going there, and it would have been far less expensive. We all know why you chose Hawaii. Just fess up and quit lying about the stupidest things!!!!

    January 27, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. Dar

    Why not Hawaii, it's warm there. Why freeze somewhere when you dont have to. Air fares are cheap right now and IM sure the people of Hawaii could use the extra advertising and not to mention money.
    Take me, Take me too.

    2010/2012 REAL Change is coming

    January 27, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
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