Via the Corner, this from the HuffPo:
Michael Steele has made perhaps the most peculiar case yet against President Obama’s criteria for choosing a Supreme Court nominee. It involves the questioning that Miss California received about her stance on gay marriage, and ends with a “slippery slope this nation is putting itself on.”
Making a guest-host appearance on Bill Bennett’s radio show on Friday, the RNC Chairman waded into the always-touchy area between pop culture and politics. But the analogy he drew was more tortured than illuminating. Hoping to argue against selecting judges based on their empathy (a quality favored by Obama), Steele firmly placed himself in tabloid terrain.
“What was so outstanding about Miss California, let’s do a little parallel… This is what an empathetic judge looks like,” Steele said of celeb-blogger Perez Hilton. “The empathetic judge in this case, the judge of the beauty pageant, asked this woman a question and instead of taking her answer at face value, he was empathetic to a particular community and he thought her answer should be favorably disposed towards that particular community. And as a consequence she answered a different way. She answered honestly. She answered based on the facts of her situation, the facts of her upbringing, the facts of this country, which by and large sides with her.”
“To even get off on this tangent of asking her a socially controversial question and then getting ticked off because you don’t like her answer. Then what the heck did you ask the question for? Just because she is Miss California you presume she is going to have a left-of-center answer on gay marriage? Come on. This is the slippery slope this nation is putting itself on and I’m telling you folks to stop it. Don’t go there.”
For an RNC Chairman to reference the top cultural controversy of the day, let alone use Perez Hilton as leverage for a partisan attack, is certainly reflective of a new approach to messaging from the GOP.
I don’t think much good came from Steele’s guest-hosting for Bill Bennett. As Kathryn Lopez wrote:
I follow this just enough to know that Michael Steele really does need to decide if he is RNC head or talking head.