Republican National Committee Chair Michael Steele has been a lightning rod since winning the post January 30th by a narrow 91 to 77 margin Over outgoing South Carolina Republican Party Chairman Katon Dawson on the sixth and final ballot. Commenting on President Obama’s stated goal of replacing retiring Supreme Court Justice David Souter with a judge who brings empathy to the Supreme Court bench, Steele, appearing on a national radio show, said Obama can “empathize right on his behind.”
The National Republican Party is trying to right itself after losing the White House as well as becoming the minority party in the House and Senate. Dawson agrees that the former Maryland Lt. Governor is off to a tough start.”Michael Steele is a friend of mine and certainly he has a had a rocky rough start, some self-inflicted, some not. That’s to be expected when you take on a party that has been driven by the White House and turn it back into a committee driven party. I think Michael has certainly had his challenges, but right now I’ve moved on to do some other things outside of the Party.”
Dawson is stepping down after seven years as South Carolina Republican Party chair and he says he is looking to move on to do other things including running his auto parts business in Columbia.
Dawson is not interested in any talk of him taking over as Chair of the RNC should Steele falter. “I have a lot of friends on the Republican National Committee and it was a really close race, but I’m not up to running the race again, but I will certainly serve Republicans all over the country. I was able because we’re from such a respected state in South Carolina, an early Presidential (primary) state.”