WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Michael Steele, a former Maryland lieutenant governor, was elected chairman of the Republican National Committee on Friday.
Steele, the first African-American to hold the post, defeated South Carolina GOP Chairman Katon Dawson, 91-77, in the final round of voting among the RNC's 168 members. Only 86 votes were needed.
"This is our opportunity. I cannot do this by myself," he told the crowd at the annual RNC meeting Friday. "God bless you, and God bless our party. ... It's going to be a new day."
Steele also told his fellow party members that it will be a "great honor to spar" with President Obama.
Drill, baby, drill.