"That was just good love between two brothers," the chairman of the Republican National Committee explained Sunday.
Obama ribbed Steele, who is also black, at the correspondents' dinner for his frequent use of slang and attempts to bring a hipper approach to the Republican Party.
"Michael Steele is in the house tonight, or as he would say, 'in the heezy.' What's up?" Obama said at the dinner, to uproarious laughter. "Michael, for the last time, the Republican Party does not qualify for a bailout. Rush Limbaugh does not count as a troubled asset, I'm sorry."
Asked on NBC's "Meet the Press" if he felt he was being mocked, Steele said no.
"I really appreciate the president throwing me a shout-out," Steele said. "It took me totally by surprise, and so this morning I just wanna say 'what's up' right back at ya'."