November 1st, 2010
08:43 AM ET
12 years ago

Steele to Palin critics: Shut up!

(CNN) – Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele is defending Sarah Palin against recent attacks Monday, telling CNN that GOP detractors of the former vice presidential nominee need to "shut up."

"These Republican leaders who don't put their names in print but make comments in shadows need to shut up," Steele told American Morning's John Roberts Monday. "We're focused on winning elections tomorrow night. We're not focused on 2012."

Steele's comments were in reference to a Politico article out Monday in which a string of unnamed Republicans, feeling Palin could not be a viable presidential contender, said it will be the party's goal to prevent her from running in 2012.

Other establishment Republicans have also gone on the record to criticize the former Alaska governor – most recently Karl Rove, who last week said Palin lacks the gravitas to sit in the oval office.

But speaking on CNN Monday, Steele said he would be happy if she is the party's standard-bearer in 2012

"If she goes through the process and the Republican primary voters vote for her, absolutely I would be happy," said Steele. "Why wouldn't I be?"

Filed under: 2012 • Michael Steele • Sarah Palin
soundoff (108 Responses)
  1. Shari from Madison

    Palin says Obama blames the repubilcans but it is Obama's fault that we are in this mess. Well, Palin, you have a warped sense ot history. Republican policies have led us to where we are. Trickle down economics championed by Republicans have put us where we are. The republican belief in huge tax cuts for the richest 1% while ignoring the poor has led us to where we are. Palin's belief that God is a republican or tea party activist has led us to where we are.

    Please people ignore this self righteous hypocrite.

    November 1, 2010 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  2. Mi Poo

    Steele is correct. These people need to stop bashing Mrs. Palin. Having her win the GOP nimination in 2012 would be awesome, and I say that as a registered Democrat!

    November 1, 2010 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  3. ST

    Steele must understand that highly thinkers don't repeat the mistake once they realise it. It was a mistake to elect "W", and it will be the unforgivable mistake to elect Sarah.

    November 1, 2010 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  4. DJ in TX

    Mr. Steele – I know you have to say what you are saying in public, but if that many GOP people (if the story is true) is aaying what they are saying, obviously there are some reasons they are doing so. Yes, they should come out and say it publicly (which no politician says REAL things publicly), but it is being said. She has over a 50% negative rating. Yes, she has a strong following, but I doubt she would make it through the primaries. Only one thing people need to know – she QUIT on the state of Alaska when things got hot. All the other BS aside, she QUIT on the state of Alaska. Nothing else needs to be said.

    November 1, 2010 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  5. Cedar Rapids

    'GOP detractors of the former vice presidential nominee need to "shut up."'
    Oh and here was me thinking they were all for freedom of speech, lol.

    November 1, 2010 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  6. Sam

    I have a better idea. Steele, YOU shut up! If your "annointed" can't handle criticism from within her own party then she shouldn't be out there running her mouth on the campaign trail. What are you afraid of...that she's gonna quit like she did in Alaska?

    November 1, 2010 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  7. Texas Doc

    No, YOU shut up!

    November 1, 2010 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  8. Jaywing

    America to Michael Steele: Why don't you and Sarah both shut up! We're all getting pretty tired of your empty, mean-spirited rhetoric. Maybe it hasn't dawned on you (and I certainly know it hasn't dawned in Sarah's little mind) that the country is tired of the GOP obstructing every positive move to get our contry back to work and in good health. It's time to be something other than a right-wing loud-mouth. If you don't want to work for the country, get out of politics.

    November 1, 2010 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  9. DAT

    How dare anybody in the GOP not follow the party line 100%!

    November 1, 2010 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  10. rkm63

    Pay no attention to this propaganda being spewed by the leftwing journalists who are simply trying to suppress voter turnout, they're the last line of defense for the socialist/marxist (democrat) party. Stand for Freedom and vote Republican!

    November 1, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  11. TheTraveler

    "If she goes through the process and the Republican primary voters vote for her, absolutely I would be happy," said Steele. "Why wouldn't I be?"

    Because there's more to this country than just Republicans! Your statement shows very well that you consider the GOP to be the only political ideology worth considering. We need people, from any party, who can get the work done that this country needs, not just to follow the agenda of a single party.

    There are a lot of "socially liberal, fiscally conservative" voters out here that vote across party lines in the hope of getting people with true leadership, intelligence and ethical capabilities. Sarah Palin is NOT that person.

    November 1, 2010 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  12. Bubba

    Man, I'd love to see her run for president! Barack would get a third term as long as she was in the running.

    November 1, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  13. Dawn Ada, Ohio

    Run Sarah Run!! and please run with Christine O'Donnell as your running mate. She is a caricature and her sole purpose is to whip up the low informed, fox voters into a frenzy. Don't get me wrong she is good for that, but that is about it. Seriously, can you see her middle east peace talks???? "Come on dudes(wink), let's all get betcha". Can you see her in a Crisis??? "it's lame stream media's fault that our economy is startin to go down the tubes". What policies does she endorse? No body knows because she doesn't endorse policies. She is reactionary. She doesn't have plans. She doesn't have strategies. She is a puppet for the Corporations......specifically Big Oil......they tell her what to say; they tell her what to do. But please go ahead and put her as your nominee in 2012, we Democrats welcome her. We truly believe the American Electorate is not as stupid as you think they are.

    November 1, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  14. Cosmo

    Mike, just get back on the bus and keep driving, even after the elections, just keep going.

    November 1, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  15. Vote GOP - Greed Over People

    Mr. Steele, I believe it was the grizzly sow that called the local media here in AK "bastards", not her detractors.

    Nice family values talk.

    On the positive side, missy is finally talking about something she is a SME on since her grandchild is illlegimate and therefore a "bastard".

    Palin/Bachmann 2012 and beyond!

    November 1, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  16. Tracy Gorman

    I completely agree: If a person cannot give his / her name and go on the record, then that person should just keep their chicken opinions to themselves. To think otherwise is just illogical.

    November 1, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  17. Clark Wilhelm Griswald

    So Steele's strategy is to let the lunatic fringe of his part run amok, to silence those with the wisdom to want higher standards that\n those the crazy-mouthed self-serving Sarah Palin epitomizes?

    November 1, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  18. hannah

    So Republican. You can shut up but we'll spout off abut anyone or anything we choose to. When people finally wake up and realize that the Republicans are all for the corporations, those companies right now that are sitting on billions and not hiring anyone and not for you and me. Vote Democrat tomorrow. Your life depends on it.

    November 1, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  19. bcnu_too

    Oh boo-hoo – Sarah Palin can say the most awful and disrespectful things about anyone but if someone says something about her they are told to shut up. She needs to quit poking her nose into everyone's business and keep her uneducated mouth shut. She talks about issues and she has no idea what she is saying.

    November 1, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  20. what a joke

    Shut up? really? here we go again where the republicans spout off their ignorance with this idiot leading the pack and where the freedom of speech only apply to him and his ilk!

    November 1, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  21. Ronnie

    Steele,like the GOP in general do not believe in free speech ! Palin will always be a dividing figure because she thinks she is making a difference in the GOP.However people on the right and left can not stand Palin for her voice and her narrow minded beliefs.

    November 1, 2010 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  22. ThinkAgain

    2 things:

    1. Steele wants to be Palin's running mate in 2012.
    2. Steele's inability to handle discord among his party is exactly why the GOP never has been and never will be a "big tent."

    You're either lockstep in line or you're out.

    So much for supporting freedom ...

    November 1, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  23. Dale

    Palin – O'donnell 2012 😀

    November 1, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  24. Dave

    Please, please, please run Palin for President in 2012. The comedy value alone will be priceless. Obama trouncing her will be a sideshow...

    November 1, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  25. TBAKER

    I'm not a republican but pretty sure if I was I would not want this woman representing my party! She is not intelligent at all and does not have a clue to what is going on in the world, she can't even control her own household. There are plenty of smart women in politics but she is not 1 of them, the people in this country that support her for a run in 2012 really want our country to be the laughing stock of the world if they elect her. President Obama would not be that bad if he got some support from the rest of the country! (Having a black President is really not that bad if people would give him support and stop looking at his color, but we are 1 of the most racist countries that ever existed!!!) Back to Palin someone please tell me why you people think she can run a country?

    November 1, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
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