The chief of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) isn’t backing down on his criticism of former RNC chair Micheal Steele, who he said lacked the “grace” to accept his apology.
Matt Schlapp, chair of the American Conservative Union, made an appearance on MSNBC this week where he was asked if CPAC communications director Ian Walters was censured for his comments alleging Steele was only elected RNC chair “because he was a Black guy.”
“Absolutely not,” Schlapp told host Hallie Jackson, saying he agreed with Walter’s stance that Republicans had been too “cynical” in its approach to nonwhites. “He has a right to speak on these issues.”
Jackson mentioned that Schlapp and Steele engaged in a war of words over the comments, even after Schlapp apologized for them.
“You said he should have some grace,” she said. “Do you regret any of that?”
Schlapp didn’t, saying Steele’s refusal to accept his or Walter’s apology “showed a lack of grace.” He claimed the latter quickly called to apologize to Steele for the remarks but to no avail.
“Things get said in a heated political conversation and at the end, we have to be able to continue to be friends,” Schlapp said. “I don’t like the fact that we’re divided.”
“But I’ll tell you one thing,” he added. I” think what Ian’s point of view is valid and I think there are a lot of people of color who are conservatives who believe the Republican Party gets this wrong a lot and it is okay to talk about it.”