Wolffe: RNC Chair Steele 'Token' African-American Put in Charge to Hide Party's Racism

Either Richard Wolffe is blatantly shilling for the liberal/progressive agenda in the United States or he really is incredibly cynical about how the Republican Party picks its leader.

Wolffe, appearing on MSNBC's Oct. 5 "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," gave his thoughts on the chairman of the Republican National Committee, Michael Steele. Wolffe, a MSNBC regular and former Newsweek columnist, shared his low regard for the former lieutenant governor of Maryland.

"Well, look - it's certainly being clumsy politics," Wolffe said. "And you know today, Michael Steele says he doesn't do policy. Tomorrow he'll say he doesn't do politics either."

But the most striking claim Wolffe made about Steele is that he was put in charge of the RNC as a gesture to camouflage racism in the movement - because in Wolffe's view, all criticism of President Barack Obama is racist.

"The poor guy has got no leash - it's not even a short leash," Wolffe said. "And to get to the race question you have to understand the Party's calculation in putting him there in the first place. It was a simplistic and crude equation they made - that to cover themselves against any accusations of racism and boy, it's not that hard to find them - they needed to have a black figure going up against an African-American president and they didn't have many people to choose from with this token gesture and so they had to choose someone that plainly wasn't ready for primetime."

Interestingly, Wolffe gave a pass to Obama back in June for attending Rev. Jeremiah Wright's church - Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ, where Wright made outrageous and racist statements. The reason, Obama just wasn't much of a church-goer according to Wolffe.

Nonetheless, Wolffe accused the GOP of having an affirmative action system in place with Steele elected as chairman, despite a contentious race for the spot that included former RNC Chairman Mike Duncan, Katon Dawson, Chip Saltsman, Saul Anuzis, Ken Blackwell and Steele.

"All of that is being played out now because it turns out irony of ironies, they don't even need any cover," Wolffe said. "They can be as outrageous as they like and portray the President as a witch doctor and they get on Fox News. So everything is fine. They didn't need the cover of Michael Steele. It's just ironic for a party that always complained about quotas and affirmative action; they have found themselves with one."