I know this is small. And someone’s going to argue that it means nothing and maybe they’re right. But GOP Chairman Michael Steele was hosting the Bill Bennett show on the radio this morning. And when asked about the Tedisco/Murphy race in NY-20 he got Tedisco’s name wrong. Not once. Not twice. Three times that I heard and I was only listening for half an hour. He kept calling the Republican candidate “Joe” while his name is “Jim.”

And he added that Tedisco was only down a few votes, while most of the places I’m looking including Politicker NY now has Tedisco up 12 votes at 9:20 p.m. last night. Now, in the long run 12 votes is not a big deal but you’d think the GOP Chairman would be looking to see what the latest numbers were.

I know. Maybe not a big deal but this isn’t like some insignificant race somewhere. It’s THE RACE. Steele himself called it a bellwether race. Many “experts” even predicted that if Republicans won NY-20, Steele’s position as Chairman was safe. If not, there might be a move to oust him. So it wasn’t like Steele didn’t have any chips on the table in this one.

And now there’s going to be a recount and likely a court case. And Steele still gets the candidate’s name wrong.

The press was pointing to this race as a referendum on Obama’s policies. Pundits said it would be a sign of a Republican resurgence. And the GOP Chairman got the name wrong.

It just shows a lack of involvement to me. I’m not saying that Steele should have been sleeping on Tedisco’s couch or anything but get the man’s name right. It’s just another sign of a disconnect between the top of the party and the rank and file. We’ve seen it with his confusing comments on abortion. We’ve seen it with his smiling while Republicans are called Nazis.

And now with the deadlock tie in NY-20, any outcome will likely languish in limbo for a long while. Much like I fear the Republican Party will under Steele.