RNC, 2.D’OH…. Just how embarrassing has the launch been for the Republican National Committee’s new website? This afternoon, RNC Chairman Michael Steele told Fox News it isn’t even a website.

“It’s not even really a web site,” Steele said. “It’s a new platform for us.”

To those that have been mocking the site by saying just that, he said it’s “a beta site.”

“So we’re working out a lot of the kinks and the bugs. So the Democrats can have some fun,” he said.

Oh, they’re not the only ones. Marc Ambinder put together a very compelling top-10 list with the reasons why the RNC’s relaunch “is fizzlin’.”

10. In a section devoted to “future leaders,” there were none.

9. In the subsequent rush to get up a “future leaders” page, they choose “you.”

8. The last GOP accomplishment cited on the accomplishment page was from 2004.

7. The what’s up page — hip! starts with this sentence: “the internet has been around for a while now”

6. Administrator passwords were accidentally posted.

5. When the RNC hosted a kick-off conference call, the website was down.

4. The website cites Jackie Robinson as a GOP hero. Robinson wasn’t a GOPer, and he criticized the GOP on race.

3. The first question on the conference call was from an Hispanic Republican who asked why the GOP site didn’t have a Spanish-language page and noted that the White House had one.

2. Bragging about web redesigns is so 2004.

1. It’s not timed with the start of any major advocacy campaign — or political campaign. And it portrays itself as something it’s not: diverse and ready to embrace new ideas. That may be what the party leadership aspires to, but, at least when it comes to diversity, a few pictures of Hispanics and African Americans doesn’t make up for … well, the history of the party.

That #6 from the list was of particular interest. The New York Daily News reported today:

In their haste to get their new Web site up and running, the Republican Party has posted online a slew of things you wouldn’t normally expect.

Such as instructions on how to operate the Web site.


By the afternoon, the site had crashed altogether. Blue State Digital’s Joe Rospars said, “You know your web program is in trouble when your site can’t even handle the traffic bump from people making fun of your web program.”

Is this what Steele meant when he said the RNC would go “beyond cutting edge“?

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.