I feel a whole lot better about him after reading that transcript. THAT sounds like the Michael Steele I remember from the Senate campaign, from those funny commercials, and longer-form appearances where he can get to talking outside of the selective edits and gotcha soundbites you know the MSM is going to continue to create. I was starting to worry, but I should have known better.
Like it or not, his charisma and personality are going to be a big part of how he attempts to sell the GOP message. Personally, I think that’s a good thing. And for those who worry that it will obscure or overtake the conservative message, I say “relax.” I thought his riffs on freedom, individual liberty, choosing life, were all very strong – I do believe, firmly, that’s he’s one of us.
I also loved his discussion of the weird non-relationship with Obama. More grist for the mill for those (like me) who see the President as a political pod person; he clearly was (and is?) threatened by the idea of a peer relationship with Steele. Come on Barack, you’re the man now. Have the brother over for a soda.
The key to making Steele successful is going to be getting him in atypical group environments, where he can effectively go about the work of expanding the base, under the radar of the national media – which is going to be the enemy, any way you slice it. But he can take a page from Reagan (that is, Deaver) and work the local news. Meet with, and talk to, local community groups, faith-based organizations, people who are doing good in the world without the government telling them how to do it. Talk about his momma (who I also love from the 2006 commercials).
I don’t know what the future holds for Michael Steele, but I hope he’s around for a long time – and I think he’s in the right job.