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Steele Explains His ‘Urban-Suburban Hip-Hop’ Strategy: I’m Going To Create ‘A Little Hip-Hop Storm’

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"Steele Explains His ‘Urban-Suburban Hip-Hop’ Strategy: I’m Going To Create ‘A Little Hip-Hop Storm’"

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Michael Steele speaks at a podiumLast February, RNC Chairman Michael Steele got widely mocked when he told the Washington Times that he wanted to apply the Republican Party’s principles “to urban-surburban hip-hop settings.” Guest hosting Bill Bennett’s radio show today, Steele explained to a caller exactly how he planned to reach out to those “settings.”

“I’m working up a little game plan for the fall that would allow me to spend some time on a number of BET channels as well as Radio One Cathy Hughes, her network,” said Steele. Steele added that he plans “to actually visit some of these colleges and universities and have a conversation.” Steele said he planned “a little hip-hop storm”:

STEELE: What it’s about right now is your health care, ability for you to run a small business and grow it to a major business. Defining wealth in America. What I like to call creating legacy wealth that is generational. Empowering you to put your kids in schools that actually educate them as opposed to dumb them down to go out and be, you know, not very productive members of society. So, you know, these are important conversations to have. I’ve just been struck by the fact that this president has not addressed those issues in a meaningful way, in the black community especially. So, I’m looking forward to doing that and causing a little hip-hop storm, if you will.

Listen here:

In March, while appearing on D.L. Hughley’s now defunct CNN show, Steele explained that when he talks about hip-hop, he’s “really not talking about specifically just hip-hop” but “an urban agenda.” “I’m not trying to play off of hip-hop. I’m not trying to use hip-hop,” he added.

Transcript:

STEELE: Joseph in Texas, what’s going on buddy?

JOSEPH: Mr. Steele.

STEELE: Hey.

JOSEPH: Hey, I was was calling because I have two questions, if we can get to them. But the first question is, I attended an HBCU at Prairie View A and M University and I was wondering — because I’ve just got turned on to you, I guess, in the last couple months — I was wondering how come you aren’t on programs with like BET, doing interviews with like Cousin Jeff or like at hip hop summits with Russell Simmons and Puff Daddy and things like that. Or around the HBCU circuit because I think you have a very interesting message, even though it may be different than, you know, blacks are the minority

STEELE: Right.

JOSEPH: We’re getting from the Democrats. But, I, this is, you’re new to me and you’re new to our community.

STEELE: Well, no, I appreciate that and in fact we are. I’m working up a little game plan for the fall that would allow me to spend some time on a number of BET channels as well as Radio One Kathy Hughes, her network. And to actually visit some of these colleges and universities and have a conversation. I’m not afraid and I’m glad you, I’m glad you called Joseph and put that question up there, because I’m not afraid to go and have this conversation. I was at the NAACP this week and I thought that it went very well. People responded. They listened. And I wanted to engage in a different way and say, look, I don’t want to come here and start talking the same old platitudes that Republicans typically say and, “oh, I’ve got to remind you that Bull Connor was a Democrat, you know. That’s not what it’s about now. What it’s about right now is your health care, ability for you to run a small business and grow it to a major business. Defining wealth in America. What I like to call creating legacy wealth that is generational. Empowering you to put your kids in schools that actually educate them as opposed to dumb them down to go out and be, you know, not very productive members of society. So, you know, these are important conversations to have. I’ve just been struck by the fact that this president has not addressed those issues in a meaningful way, in the black community especially. So, I’m looking forward to doing that and causing a little hip hop storm, if you will. We’ll be back.

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