Well, that was fast!
Earlier, I gave Michael Steele until Thursday before he caved in and apologized to Rush Limbaugh for calling him an "ugly," "incendiary" entertainer.
Today on his show, Limbaugh dragged Steele over coals for the remarks.
And before the sun went down, Steele got his mind right.
Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele says he has reached out to Rush Limbaugh to tell him he meant no offense when he referred to the popular conservative radio host as an “entertainer” whose show can be “incendiary.”Also during the interview on CNN, Steele angrily disagreed with Hughley when the host suggested that Limbaugh is the real leader of the GOP.
“My intent was not to go after Rush – I have enormous respect for Rush Limbaugh,” Steele said in a telephone interview. “I was maybe a little bit inarticulate. … There was no attempt on my part to diminish his voice or his leadership.”
The dust-up comes at a time when top Democrats are trying to make Limbaugh the face of the Republican Party, in part by using ads funded by labor. Americans United for Change sent a fund-raising e-mail Monday that begins: “The Republican Party has turned into the Rush Limbaugh Party.”
Steele told CNN host D.L. Hughley in an interview aired Saturday night: “Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer. Rush Limbaugh — his whole thing is entertainment. He has this incendiary — yes, it's ugly.”
Steele, who won a hard-fought chairman's race on Jan. 30, told Politico he telephoned Limbaugh after his show on Monday afternoon and hoped that they would connect soon.
HUGHLEY: Like Rush Limbaugh, who is the de facto leader of the Republican Party.So much for that.
STEELE: No, he’s not.
HUGHLEY: I will tell you what …
STEELE: I’m the de facto leader of the Republican Party.