RNC May Limit Steele's Power

Infighting tearing up committee
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2009 1:20 PM CDT
RNC May Limit Steele's Power
In this Friday, Jan. 30, 2009 picture, former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele speaks after being elected the first black Republican National Committee chairman.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

A bitter fight is raging within the Republican Party after an attempt by an RNC faction to limit Michael Steele’s powers, the Washington Times reports. The “good governance” resolution would put new controls on the chairman’s ability to spend money and award contracts. Its backers, who include the RNC's treasurer, need signatures from 16 states to force a vote.

“I urge you to reject this hostile attempt to embarrass and neuter the chairman of the RNC,” wrote Wisconsin’s party chairman in an email to the committee. The vote would come at next month’s special meeting of the committee. That meeting itself is a challenge to the chairman’s authority. It was called so members could vote on a resolution to brand Democrats “socialists,” a move Steele thinks unwise. (More RNC stories.)

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