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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/31/09

Michael Steele, The New Face Of The GOP?

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I would so like to believe the GOP has changed its ways, regarding their recent election of Michael Steele, an African-American, to the position of Chairman of the Republican Party.


I’m as serious as a heart attack here. I don’t know all that much about Mr. Steele, Maryland’s former Lieutenant Governor, but from what I can tell, he seems qualified, and appears to be a decent guy.


He’s got a helluva tough job ahead of him, if he hopes to somehow re-create the image of the GOP as much more than a dwindling group of white, race-intolerant men, primarily from the South, coupled with that western nation-within-a-nation I prefer to call “WyUtAho.”


One current Republican tactic shows a county-by-county American map, illustrating the counties in red or blue, depending of course, on which direction that particular county took in last November’s election. At first glance, one might be impressed by the fact that there appears to be more red than blue in America. One then realizes that many of the red counties are inhabited primarily by jackrabbits, deer, and cattle, with precious few humans.


Therein lays the rub for the GOP. With the exception of the Limbaugh’s and Hannity’s and their relatively small, but fanatic band of followers, many Republicans now realize they must either dump the Nixon-Reagan-Bush “Southern Strategy,” which for terms of brevity, is good ol’simple, down-home racism, or remain as irrelevant as they became in this last election.


While I have no reason to rain on Mr. Steele’s parade, I fervently hope they picked him because of his political skills, which I have no reason to question.


Someone less progressive than myself might wonder why I am so disbelieving in reference to the GOP’s decision to suddenly “discover” a functional, desirable black man to function as a modern-day Moses, to lead them out of the desert they have most recently found themselves in?


I guess…maybe I just don’t trust them.


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Thomas L. Walsh graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Communications/Journalism degree in 1962. Following a successful business career, he retired to Idaho's Teton Valley in 1999, where he works as a free-lance writer. Walsh and his (more...)
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