Ross weighs in on Steele:
If I may overgeneralize a bit (and in a self-serving way) from an extremely small sample size, I think Steele's stumbles, while different in form from Sarah Palin's unsuccessful broadcast-network interviews (he's said too much; she didn't say enough ... and was tongue-tied doing it), reflect a similar underlying difficulty - the attempt to brazen through an intellectual vacuum with charisma alone.
Both Steele and Palin are extremely charismatic, as American politicians go, which is a big reason why Republicans of different stripes - moderates for the Marylander, conservatives for the Alaskan - have been so excited about them. But they've both attempted (or been asked) to chart a new direction for the Right on style alone, and they've floundered as soon as they've been pressed for substance. Steele has responded by telling his interlocutors whatever they want to hear, Palin responded by telling her interlocutors next to nothing at all - and the results, in both cases, are and were unfortunate.
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