WASHINGTON (CN) – The Republican National Committee on Friday elected its first black chairman, Michael Steele, after the party lost the support of Hispanic and black Americans in the national election. “It’s time for something completely different,” said the moderate Steele. Echoing President Obama, the new leader said to his committee, “I cannot do this by myself. This is about empowering you.”
The former Maryland lieutenant governor won against Carolina GOP chief Katon Dawson in the sixth round of voting after being endorsed by Ken Blackwell, the former Ohio secretary of state. Blackwell was the only other African-American running for GOP chairman and was one of the most conservative candidates in the race.