Steele calls Limbaugh "incendiary, ugly"

In an interview, the RNC chair emphasized that he, not the radio talker, leads the GOP -- then went further.

Published March 2, 2009 5:10PM (EST)

Apparently, Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele isn't a big fan of people saying someone else -- like, say, Rush Limbaugh -- is the one who's really in charge of the GOP.

Steele was being interviewed by CNN's D.L. Hughley recently when Hughley called Limbaugh "the de facto leader of the Republican Party."

"No, he's not," Steele quickly replied. "I'm the de facto leader of the Republican Party." The RNC chair then went further, saying, "Let’s put it into context here. Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer. Rush Limbaugh, his whole thing is entertainment. Yes, it’s incendiary. Yes, it’s ugly."

Given the recent history of Republican leaders who've quickly had to walk back any sort of criticism of Limbaugh, it'll be interesting to see what happens next.

(Hat-tip Think Progress.)

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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