Michael Steele Talks Hip-Hop and the Republican Party

AllHipHop Staff

Hip-Hop culture and the Republican Party may appear to be polar opposites on the surface, but the group’s national chairman Michael Steele sought to reach common ground at a recent Howard University speaking engagement.

In an effort to establish common ground, Steele told a small group of students that Hip-Hop as a billion dollar industry has the resources to the create the community wealth that just two decades ago seemed impossible.

“It wasn’t glorifying, you know, the violence, and the language, and all of the other aspects of some of this music. It was about the ability to create wealth,” Steele explained. “It was about the ability to create legacy wealth. You have amongst you right now a generation of African-American entrepreneurs who are creating incredible wealth, and they’re investing it, some of it, in the community. They’re controlling that wealth. How are they doing it? Well, instead of the publisher or the record company owning the rights to their music, they own the record company…Our country can afford to have more than one Oprah Winfrey.”

Since becoming the first black chairman of the Republican National Committee, Steele has struggled to create consistent dialogue with the young Hip-Hop crowd that whole-heartedly embraced Barack Obama during his presidential run.

In May, the president joked with Steele over his so far futile efforts at a White House dinner.

“Michael Steele is in the house tonight. Or as he would say, in the heezy,” quipped President Obama. “What’s up! Michael for the last time the Republican Party does not qualify for a bailout. Rush Limbaugh does not count as a troubled asset.”

At press time Steele is embarked on a nationwide speech series, which has sparked controversy for comments likening President Obama’s healthcare plan to socialism, and accusing his administration of creating “death panels” that will decide care methods.