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Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

Holy Mackerel! That's Some Pricey Speechifying!

RNC Chairman Michael Steele must have a real way with words — he certainly knows how to charge for them, and he isn’t shy about it. Apparently he’s doing regular speaking gigs and charging up to $20,000 a pop. Wow! But we’ve always known Steele had a witty, “beyond cutting edge” style all his own, so it’s really no wonder that he would charge people to listen to his words of wisdom. I mean, when you’ve got the prescience and insight to call that ghetto Obama stimulus package “bling bling,” you really set a high bar for yourself. (Ain’t he hip-hop and fresh and straight dope, y’all? What a guy!)

From Raw Story,

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, who already earns $223,500 as chairman of his party, is cashing in to the tune of $10,000 – $15,000 per speech given while he is still the de facto party leader.

And it has former GOP chairmen hopping mad.

According to a report in Tuesday’s Washington Times, Steele — who has sparked controversy within his party — is personally profiting from speeches at colleges, trade fairs and other groups. He charges as much as $20,000 per speech, plus first class airfare and hotel accomodations.

$20,000 is nearly the poverty line for the annual income of an American family of four ($22,050).

Raw Story

Jeez, that Steele really knows how to slum it! Only $20,000 for a speech? But speeches have all those complicated words and phrases and vowels and such! No wonder that cool hip-hop makeover Steele has been imposing on the Grand Old Party is going so well!

“Holy mackerel, I never heard of a chairman of either party ever taking money for speeches,” said Frank J. Fahrenkopf Jr., RNC chairman under President Reagan and CEO of the American Gaming Association.

“The job of a national chairman is to give speeches. That’s what the national party pays him for. We didn’t have a rule book back then, but being national chairman was and is a full-time job,” Mr. Fahrenkopf said.

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Jim Nicholson, who served in that position from 1997 to 2000 and was President George W. Bush’s Veterans Affairs secretary from 2005 to 2007, said the job “demands so much of your time that you can work 24/7 and not get everything done, so taking time out to speak for the benefit of one’s own bank account is not appropriate.”

Talking Points Memo

What is it about the GOP that just screams “EXCESS”? Am I the only one who gets that impression? Wasn’t there something about Sarah Palin’s wardrobe at one point…? Hmmmmm….


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