Ever since he was elected chair of the Republican National Committee, former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele has faced a blizzard of criticism, mostly from those within the party. The institutional loyalty and discipline that used to characterize the RNC headquarters operations has given way to a culture where leaking is the norm, and where party factions barely conceal their disdain for Steele. Steele deserves some of the criticism, mostly for his Biden-like I'm-gonna-give-it-to-you-straight talk. (The difference: Biden's problem is that his brain lacks a filter; Steele's is that his brain always tries to calculate what the audience wants to hear.)
The latest entry in the logbook of Steele demerits comes from the Daily Caller, the quixotic new conservative website run by Tucker Carlson. From the first days of its existence, the "DC" put Steele on notice, mocking his public pronouncements and reporting rigorously on his decisions. Carlson is a no BS conservative whose public image requires him to highlight the "no BS" part of the gig; his writers emulate his style, often with solid results. The DC wants to become a conservative version of Talking Points Memo, with a division between its reporters and its columnists, and also wants to disprove the cultural notion that journalists with conservative ideologies can't simultaneously be good reporters.