Another Steele gaffe: Honest Injun!

The GOP chair charged with outreach to non-whites uses a slur against American Indians

Published January 5, 2010 10:06PM (EST)

The big news from Michael Steele's sit-down with Fox host Sean Hannity was Steele's semi-surprising assertion that his party won't take back the House in 2010 because Republicans aren't "ready."

Was it candor, or Steele's idea of political jujitsu, to fool Democrats into "believing" things are better for the party than they seem? I don't think it matters; nobody takes Steele seriously as a political thinker, in or out of the Republican party, except Steele himself. His election was a cynical gambit by the GOP to hide its unpopularity with non-white voters, to ignore the message of the 2008 election: That they have become the Grand Old (White Guy) Party.

Of course, Steele has failed miserably, spending most of his time offending African Americans with increasingly goofy faux ghetto-speak – remember his abortive "What up?" blog? Tuesday he told the Today Show's Meredith Vieira that despite a rocky first year, "brother still here." But black people who cringe at Steele's jive-talkin' may now have some company among American Indians. Asked by Hannity if he believes the Republican Party needs to moderate to win national elections, Steele answered:

"No, no… No, no! But that’s what’s gotten us into trouble, when we walked away from principle. Our platform is one of the best political documents that’s been written in the last 25 years. Honest Injun on that."

Honest Injun! You can't make this stuff up. If you want to have more fun with Michael Steele, Salon Editorial Fellow Christopher Rogers found this great site where you can keep it real with the GOP chair. Have fun!


By Joan Walsh

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Michael Steele Republican Party