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You Down With GOP? Yeah, You Know Me!

RNC chairman Michael Steele says the Republican Party needs a "hip-hop" makeover

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    RNC chair Michael Steele thinks the GOP could use a little more bling-bling.

    Maybe Karl was onto something when he rapped as his alter-ego MC Rove.

    The Republican Party needs a "hip-hop" makeover to attract younger voters, Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele said in an interview with the Washington Times.

    The first black RNC chair said he plans an "off the hook" public relations campaign to show teenage constituents, especially blacks and Hispanics, that the GOP is still F-L-Y.

    Steele said the Party needed to escape from its "comfort" zone and avoid being defined as a regional party, citing recent Republican defeats in North Carolina and Virginia.

    "We need messengers to really capture that region - young, Hispanic, black, a cross-section," Steele said.

    "We want to convey that the modern-day GOP looks like the conservative party that stands on principles. But we want to apply them to urban-suburban hip-hop settings."

    The GOP's new image will "surprise everyone" when it's launched on the Internet, television, print and radio advertisements, Steele said.

    The former Maryland lieutenant governor and state Republican Party chairman became chair of the 168-member RNC on Jan. 30.

    The plan to reshape the GOP will appeal to a rainbow of voters from a variety of ethnic, socioeconomic and political backgrounds, Steele said.

    He's even got the little guy in mind.

    "We need to uptick our image with everyone," Steele said, "including one-armed midgets."