Rich Galen

Here is some un-asked-for advise for the Chairman of the Republican National Committee, Michael Steele: Go after the other guys.

If you've missed this (because it is so insignificant in the face of the Obama Administration ending Capitalism as we pointed out the other day) here are the basics: Michael Steele and Rush Limbaugh are in a spat.

How did this happen?

It happened because the Democrats are reprising their 1996 theory which was to fire a huge percentage of their ammunition not against the GOP party nominee, Bob Dole, but at Newt Gingrich.

At the time, we estimated that the DNC and its affiliates in the labor movement and other Left Wing organizations spent something north of $60 million to demonize Newt.

Why Newt? Because he was such a well-known commodity the Dems didn't have to spend a dime introducing him; they could spend every penny making him into the devil.

Newt, at the time, was the equivalent of McDonald's. If you drive past a McDonald's and see the Golden Arches you know everything you need to know about what is available inside that restaurant.

By the time the Democrats were done with Newt, it didn't matter what the issue was. All they had to say was "Newt's in favor of this" and 55% of the population was against it. No matter what "it" was.

The Obama White House is using the same technique against Rush Limbaugh. No surprise. The Chief of Staff at the White House is Rahm Emanuel - he was in the Clinton White House during the anti-Newt era and he saw how effectively it worked.

Now to the Republican National Committee.

Being the chair of a national committee when your party has control of the White House is not much fun. The White House calls all the shots and you can say or do nothing that some 23-year-old hasn't approved.

If you are the chair of one of the national committees when the other team controls the WH, it is - or should be - a great deal of fun. You can, like a child in a T-ball game, put the ball on the T, close your eyes, and swing as hard as you can. There are no policy implications if your party isn't in the White House.

Consider the RNC's position during the immigration debate of 2007. President Bush wanted comprehensive immigration reform and it didn't matter what the leadership of the RNC thought; the RNC was a wholly-owned subsidiary of the WH.

Smile and nod.

So, now back to the Steele-Limbaugh kerfluffle.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at