A new GOP, not just window dressing

OPINION

Charlotte-area resident Lenny McAllister says the election of Michael Steele to lead the Republican National Committee represents real change

Lenny McAllister, the Qcity’s resident black conservative, says change has come to the Republican Party. And with it, he says, African Americans must begin to embrace political diversity.

So what signifies this metamorphosis in the GOP?

The recent election of Michael Steele, a black man, to head the Republican National Committee, McAllister argues on theroot.com.

Where some might see tokenism in Steele’s election — an effort by Republicans to respond to Obama-mania — McAllister sees a sincere desire from GOP leaders to make the party more inclusive, to spruce up its tattered (and sometimes racist) image, to bring it into the 21st Century, especially where technology is involved.

From McAllister’s commentary:
Yes, the Obama win had a hand in Steele’s election as GOP chair, but it’s not because both men are black. All the elements that went into Barack Obama’s campaign for president are exactly what the Republican Party needs if it is to reverse its current fortunes. For example, Obama’s effective use of the Internet for advertising and voter contact stood out in contrast to the Republicans’ failure to leverage technology to their advantage. Obama’s affability and eloquence was regarded as a strength while public image of the 21st century Republican is the awkwardness of former President George W. Bush and gaffes of Gov. Sarah Palin.

Republicans learned through the huge losses of the 2008 election that they cannot beat eloquence with polarizing campaign rhetoric.

Delegates knew that whether they chose Steele or not, it would bring criticism — darned if they picked him, darned if they didn’t.

Or, more like, “Tokenism if they picked him, racism if they didn’t.”

Read McAllister’s full commentary at theroot.com.

Also, see our related article on McAllister.

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