Former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman of Minnesota said he won't pursue the Republican National Committee chairmanship as long as Michael Steele wants to keep the job.
Coleman told the St. Paul Pioneer Press on Friday that part of his decision is based on respect for Steele, despite criticism directed against the current chairman from within the party. Coleman said he doesn't think Steele has gotten enough credit for the work he's done bringing the "tea party" movement and the GOP together.
Coleman has been mentioned as a potential replacement for Steele. He said he won't speculate about whether he would seek the chairmanship if Steele declines to run again.
Coleman is currently CEO of the center-right policy and advocacy group American Action Network, based in Washington.