Former RNC Chair Michael Steele: The Republican ‘R’ Has Become a ‘Scarlet Letter’ Again

In 2006, President George W. Bush‘s approval rating — according to Gallup — was hovering just above 30 percent for much of the year, and barely topped 40 at any point.

That November, Michael Steele — the former Lt. Governor of Maryland — ran for the U.S. Senate.

“I was on the ballot in 2006 and remember kind of pushing against that scarlet letter, the “R” at that time,” Steele said Monday on Morning Joe

Now, according to Steele? That R is once again a scarlet letter for the GOP.

“That scalet letter is now back in play for the Democrats — and a bigger emphasis on it this time,” The former RNC chairman said. “And they have the advantage right now.”

Gallup, as of last week, had President Donald Trump at 39 percent approval. His 2017 numbers very closely resemble Bush’s in 2006.

As such, Steele believes Republicans have no choice but to distance themselves from their party’s standard bearer.

“The question I think politically for the RNC is; how do you develop that ground game to make sure your base…is not just focused on the president, but those candidates that are also going to be on the ballot in his name.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

[featured image via screengrab]


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Joe DePaolo is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @joe_depaolo