Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

The man the Republican Party wanted to be its standard-bearer in 1996 has endorsed the man the Democratic Party chose as its standard-bearer in 2008.

There is an interesting debate among some on this side of the aisle as to whether it's worth fully embracing Colin Powell's endorsement today of Barack Obama, particularly in light of the role the former Secretary of State played in the run up to the Iraq War. But to me, the more interesting angle to the story is the one in my lede above.

In 1996, the Republican Party's best and probably only shot at retaking the White House was with Powell at their helm. Indeed, exit polling showed Powell beating Bill Clinton and Ross Perot in a three-way match up that year -- with 50 percent of the vote, I might add. Even before the 1994 midterm elections, a significant Draft Powell movement had emerged within the GOP. In August 1996, Powell was one of the key featured speakers at the Republican National Convention. Just today, Powell made clear that he's still a member of the Republican Party.

So the fact that Powell, a Republican who very well might have been a Republican President in 1997, came out this morning and endorsed Obama for President in no uncertain terms is a remarkable repudiation of the GOP, one that has to sting. It would be like Mario Cuomo endorsing George W. Bush in 2004, except bigger because by 2004 Cuomo was less prominent on the national stage than Powell is today. The closest comparison in my mind might be 1940 Republican Presidential nominee Wendell Willkie accepting a prominent role in the FDR administration (or Arthur Arnie Vinick joining the nascent Matt Santos administration, as it were).

The Republicans may try to play the race card in an attempt to discount the importance of today's news, but it just doesn't ring true to me -- and I have a feeling it won't to a whole lot of voters, either.

Tags: Barack Obama, Colin Powell, Endorsements, White House 1996, White House 2008 (all tags)

Comments

76 Comments

Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Yeah the "race" card thing has already started.  Living in Kansas, my hometown paper, well the comments section anyway is pretty much a Palin rally...and they are all saying that he only picked Obama because he's black.  I'm sure none of them actually saw the interview on Meet the Press, because well I'm sure some church was airing their sermon - but it's a bit disgusting really.  I lost about 99% of my respect for Colin Powell after the speech at the UN but these type of endorsements are important...now if he'd just admit he was wrong about Iraq.

by neechi 2008-10-19 10:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell

It allows the few Republican moderates left to vote for Obama.  It will hurt McCain in battleground states.  In addition, it helps bring the nation together after the election.

by TomP 2008-10-19 10:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I took a quick gander at the freeperville site and saw the word 'traitor' being thrown about alot regardling Powell. I also noticed Obama being referred to as a 'communist'. The Republican bullying via hurling anti-american and/or pro-terrorist slurs at anyone who disagrees with them is appalling, and the best reason I can think of to make sure their political back gets broken. This is America, the land of the FREE last I heard, including freedom of thought and expression. What do they want - a Republican theocratic dictatorship? Wait, don't answer that ;)

by phoenixdreamz 2008-10-19 10:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

It seems George Will is falling in line with the "race" argument.

From FireDogLake:
http://firedoglake.com/2008/10/19/george -will-colin-powell-endorsed-obama-becaus e-hes-black/

by neechi 2008-10-19 10:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

LET THEM! Please, God, LET THEM! Do you know how long Obama has been trying to get those bastards to start talking about race? He already warned months ago, he needs the chance to bring that talk home!

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 02:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I would like to remind everyone that Colin Powell was a strong supporter of rhe war.  He went to the UN and SOLD the war to america, europe, and elsewhere.  And some of what he said was total fing bullshit.  Remember the model biological weapon trucks.  PLEASE.   The tubes for centrifuges to enrich uranium, PLEASE.  I could go on and on. Colin Powell is as responsible as Bush for the mess and i am sorry but he is them not us.

david

by giusd 2008-10-19 10:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Theres a bigger picture here that you're not choosing to acknowledge.

by Lodgemannered 2008-10-19 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

What is that.  That Colin Powell is one of the major reasons we are in the biggest mess in our country in the last 50 years.

He gets a pass because he likes BO. SORRY. No thanks.  4000 american deaths!!!!!

david

by giusd 2008-10-19 12:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Ah, But don't I pine for the day when McPuma trolls were rampant.

Begone.

by lojasmo 2008-10-19 12:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Dude,

Grow up.  

david

by giusd 2008-10-19 02:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I read through your profile, troll.  You and Chitown denny should toddle on over to redstate.

by lojasmo 2008-10-19 05:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

When asked if he feels it has tarnished his reputation, he said, "Of course it will. It's a blot. I'm the one who presented it on behalf of the United States to the world, and [it] will always be a part of my record. It was painful. It's painful now."

Sept. 8th, 2005

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/Politics/stor y?id=1105979

Do you feel as strongly about those in the Senate who voted to authorize the use of military force in Iraq?  4,000 american deaths.  Let me remind you: more than Powell's hand have blood on them, David.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 12:44PM | 0 recs
excellent point

I don't particularly like Powell myself.  And it's not unreasonable to worry that his past sins (which are way more than just the 2002/2003 Iraq stuff) will be forgiven by moderates and even liberals who will think fondly of this endorsement.

But there is more than enough damn blame to go around for Iraq.  Most dems voted for the AUMF, and I can't for a second buy the crap about them believing the doctored evidence.  Many of them repeatedly voted for funding, year after year.  Many of them viciously attacked Dean for saying we were less safe in 2004, which was perhaps the most uncomfortably truthful statement of the campaign.  

So let's not waste our breath on Powell one way or the other, other than acknowledging that this endorsement is likely to reduce the chance that McCain is elected and the whole world is worse off.

by edparrot 2008-10-19 12:56PM | 0 recs
Re: excellent point

Well said.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 12:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Hell yes i feel strongly.  How many times did the dems put their fingers in the air and say i have to cave to bush????

And really while there may be more with blood on their hands then Powel that number can be counted on one hand.  What few people were still speaking out against the war where frozen out after Powell's speach at the UN.  Seriously, maybe you should read what he said.  If it doesnt make your blood boil nothing will.

No speach sealed the deal with the votes than Powell's presentation to the UN.

david

by giusd 2008-10-19 02:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I'm sorry.  I've read what he said.  I'm afraid I don't understnad what you're saying.  Did you, or did you not, support HRC in the primaries?

If you did, how do you account for her AUMF vote?  I don't want to re-fight the primary here, David, but I have to question why HRC's failure to dissent sits well with you, while Powell's does not.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 03:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

The point you make is moot, unless you will not support Obama/Biden based on Biden's support for AUMF.

by ChitownDenny 2008-10-19 03:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Wrong.  My point must have eluded you.  Your statement actually supports my premise.  

While I disagreed with both Biden AND Hillary's Yay votes for AUMF, I recognize those actions for what they were in context (poor political calculations).  They were, in point of fact, privy to the same intelligence Powell was and are arguably as responbsible for the disaster that is Iraq.  For the greater good, these mistakes must be put behind us, IMO.

David's argument (near as I can decipher) is that we shouldn't accept Powell's endorsement as a positive, or that it should be opposed/disqualified based on his role in the "selling" of the war.  

It's disengenuous for David to hold this position, particlarly in light of his ardent support of HIllary Clinton.  My question to him was, and remains, why is Hillary's erroneous judgment forgivable while Powells's is not?

If he cannot account for this, he's been hoisted with his own petard--and you've assisted in doing so.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 05:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
Fogiv, I'm sure you can distinguish between authorization to use force if necessary and the request to use force as a necessity; i.e., Hillary's and Biden's (and other Dems) position vs. Powell's.  
Personally, I don't want to get into a pissing match about Powell.  I saw his MTP interview and I thought he was exceptional (though upon reflection I believe there may hsve been some politicking involved).   But you cannot compare Hillary's and Powell's Iraq positions.
by ChitownDenny 2008-10-19 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Chitown,

If at the time of the authorization vote, you actually believed that Administration had any intention of NOT invading Iraq, you're a member of one of the most discrete minorities on Planet Earth.

I'm sure you have the ability to distinguish between a principled vote and an acquiesence in the face of "soft on terror" accusations.  Such was the political climate at the time.

Everyone knew what that vote was for Denny, even you I suspect.  I disagree with your assertion that differing facets of the same gem are incomparable, and recognize that we may never see eye to eye in that regard.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 05:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Um, we've had much longer wars without Congressional autorization.  Vietnam ring a bell.  I am saddened that you appear more willing to forgive Powell for his involvement in the Iraq war, an highly consequential involvement, yet not Hillary's, a vote in line with many of her party.  But don't get me wrong, I respect the totality of Powell's career and make no definitive judgement based on one action.

by ChitownDenny 2008-10-19 05:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

The Vietnam bell rings loudly in the belfry of Red Herring Chapel, Denny.  No matter.

For the greater good, I have forgiven (as much as I am able) Hillary, Biden, AND Powell equally.  I simply ask why David excuses some and not others.

Further, I'm of the opinion that Powell's role was undoubtably consequential, particulary in it's attempt to gain both public and international support for the war.  I don't negate this, nor am I attempting to.

Regardless of Powell's action (or inaction if you prefer), the AUMF vote was where the rubber met the road.  Frankly, I expected more from Democrats, and less from Powell.  

by fogiv 2008-10-19 06:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

The rubber met the road when Bush commissioned American troops to Iraq.  The fact that David; i.e. guisd, calls out Powell for his significant involvement in this ocurrence doesn't give you free reign to object to David's point of view, unless you are a hypocrite.

by ChitownDenny 2008-10-20 10:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

...with the approval of congress.  Again, you're not making sense.  

David (i.e. guisd) is welcome to call out Powell in recognition of his errors, but fails to grant the same leeway he affords Hillary (despite erros arugably as woeful as those of Powell).  That is the point, and despite your efforts to make it so, there's nothing remotely hypocritical in my making it.  You're free to call a firetruck a turnip all day long, but virtually everyone who hears you will know you're wrong.  

Some things never change.  You, most certainly, are one of them. Have fun with the firetruck (or as you see it, turnip).  I've grown weary of the banality of your "arguments", as they lack any form of cogency.

by fogiv 2008-10-20 11:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
Can you draw a circle?  You've argured yourself back to David' original point.
Have a good day.
by ChitownDenny 2008-10-20 11:37AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Heh.  What a tremendous waste of time you are.

David's original point was that Powell's endorsement should be either villified, or rejected (or both).

My counter-point was that David's position was untenable given his support for Hillary (per her AUMF) vote.  To exuse her role, while condemning Powell's is hypocrtical--a point you (rightly)tried to make against my support for Obama/Biden (given Biden's vote).  In fact, this last has been your only supportable claim in the discussion, albeit nullified powerless by my admission and acceptance (for the greater good)of Powell's, Biden's, and Hillary's respective roles.

If I've made a circle, it's only beacuse you have summarliy failed to have moved the discussion forward.  The succulent irony is that you pine for true discourse on this forum (or claim to), and yet fail to meaninfully engage in it.  Despite a lengthy exchange, you've said nearly nothing of merit, and have indirectly argued for my position--not against it.

On second thought, I take it back.  You have managed to accomplish one thing.  You've cemented your reputation as an agitator whose aim is not discourse, but disruption.  I suppose I've learned late what most here have already confirmed.

50,000,000 Elvis fans can't be wrong.  

by fogiv 2008-10-20 01:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

It's simple: both Hillary and Powell have apologised. It was a catastrophic error. Only one politician on either of the party tickets foresaw that. Obama.

Chitown, I wish you hadn't encouraged David and this pointless fighting of old wars. I can't remember you in the early days of the primaries, but we fought this ought for months on end.

It's over. Iraq was a huge mistake. Let's rebuild consensus, and make sure the Republican neocons don't regain power for a generation, until they've learned their lesson.

by brit 2008-10-19 06:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

My fault too.  I probably shouldn't have engaged to begin with.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 06:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

No, you did an excellent job.

by brit 2008-10-20 02:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Yes i supported HRC and yes i was VERY upset that she and a host of other dems CAVED.  And lets be clear they did. But i dont blame HRC for the campaign to push the war.

Seriously next someone will be telling me Bush is ok if he supports BO.  Please.  Powell gave the neocons cover to sell the war.  For democrats to give me shit because i am upset with Powell is over the top.  He supported and sold the war???

Did i miss something.

david

by giusd 2008-10-19 04:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

David,

Are you aware that the administration would not have even attempted to seek UN approval had it not been for Colin Powell?

Are you aware of the fact that Powell was fed the same batch of bullshit (faulty and/or doctored intelligence) congress was?

Did you know that Powell continued to question the veracity of the intelligence to be used in his presentation (even tried to stike some) hours before presenting it, but was stonewalled by Cheney, Tenet, and the CIA?

Now, this doesn't mean Powell wasn't wrong to proceed.  He was.  Ultimately, Powell provided bullets.  Hillary, Biden, and the others who caved pulled the trigger.  

Again, who do you think should be held more accountable?

by fogiv 2008-10-19 05:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Yes, Blair and Powell were major allies during that search for a UN resolution. Both their careers were destroyed by it. As a Brit, with his first left of centre Prime Minister in his adult life, I grieve for their mistake.

But at least Powell has had the courtesy to admit his errors in front of the UN.

Someone who admits wrong should always be commended

by brit 2008-10-19 06:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I think you should ask MoveOn.org how well crusades against military generals go. Go fight your battle if you want, get a big team together and see what gets done when you make no effort whatsoever to build bridges.

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 03:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

For some, it would seem, the concept of "the greater good" isn't worth consideration.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 03:51PM | 0 recs
For real!

Do we want another eight years of absolutely hating each other? I sure as hell don't, and it's one of the biggest reasons I have been pushing to get the GOP out of office.

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 04:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

David. You might not be surprised, but I'll go with Obama on this

Obama speech in Fayetteville, NC

Remarks of Senator Barack Obama--as prepared for delivery
Fayetteville, North Carolina
Sunday, October 19th, 2008

Before we begin, I'd like to acknowledge some news we learned this morning.  With so many brave men and women from Fayetteville serving in our military, this is a city and a state that knows something about great soldiers.  And this morning, a great soldier, a great statesman, and a great American has endorsed our campaign to change America.  I have been honored to have the benefit of his wisdom and counsel from time to time over the last few years, but today, I am beyond honored and deeply humbled to have the support of General Colin Powell.  

General Powell has defended this nation bravely, and he has embodied our highest ideals through his long and distinguished public service.  He and his wife Alma have inspired millions of young people to serve their communities and their country through their tireless commitment and trailblazing American story.  And he knows, as we do, that this is a moment where we all need to come together as one nation - young and old, rich and poor, black and white, Republican and Democrat.  

by brit 2008-10-19 01:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
I'm saddened that David; i.e. usernam:  guisd, has written his truth, the truth which many are share, yet his detractors are mojo'd while David is not.
Mojo'd, David.
Let's engage in the dialogue.
by ChitownDenny 2008-10-19 02:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Unfortunately this dialogue would also open the question of AUMF

Out of deference to Hillary, her supporters, and their fantastic support of Obama, I would prefer not to go there.

by brit 2008-10-19 02:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
AUMF?  Obama/Biden?  Please....  
I'll agree it's preferrable not to go there.
by ChitownDenny 2008-10-19 03:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Maybe you're an exception

by brit 2008-10-19 06:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

May as well.  Some folks still live there.  It's the only language they speak.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 03:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Some people never learn. Sigh.

by brit 2008-10-19 06:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

He sold the war because Cheney and Rumsfeld and Rice lied to him.  They told him that the Uranium existed and Powell's mistake was that he beleived them.

by gavoter 2008-10-19 05:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

way, WAY overblowing the impact of powell. No one gives a shit about colin powell anymore, on either side. The left despises him for cashing in his reputation to ensure the Iraq war happened, and the right despises him because after cashing in his grossly undeserved reputation, he has nothing else of value for them to abuse. Colin powell is the walking dead.

by gak 2008-10-19 10:59AM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

prove it

by gak 2008-10-19 11:23AM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

His favorable rating is only 80 percent.

by Jonathan Singer 2008-10-19 11:28AM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

That's the most compelling 'end of discussion' comment I've seen this campaign season, lol

by phoenixdreamz 2008-10-19 11:44AM | 0 recs
Ouch!

Good comeback, Jonathan.  Remind to trip-check my facts if I ever decide to contradict you :)

by edparrot 2008-10-19 12:58PM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

according to whom?

by gak 2008-10-19 01:20PM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

Rassmussen.  Did you even click the link?  BTW, how are Dorothy and the Scarecrow?  Your ear is so tin, I figure the rest of you is equally so.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 01:31PM | 0 recs
Re: You forgot about the undecided middle.

I agree with this, but it's not enough to sway anyone, I don't think.  The liberals who like him already support Obama.  The conservatives who like him aren't going to change for anything (as Palin's rallies make clear).  The moderates are, I think, the ones who care the least about Powell.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-10-19 01:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
I think the impact of Powell is more in the middle.  Those of us on the left lost faith in him, those on the right feel betrayed by this move and by his perceived disloyalty to Dubya.  
But the people in the middle that for whatever reason don't realize his complicity in the Iraq sham, still like the guy.  Especially when their greatest concern would be the war and terrorism (thanks to fear mongering from the right) former military endorsements are helpful to those people.  
by neechi 2008-10-19 11:07AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I disagree.  I think they are the ones least likely to be swayed.  I think moderates that are not political junkies just know Powell as "some guy in the Bush administration."  I am willing to be wrong, and I certainly am not unhappy about his endorsement, but I don't really think it is going to move votes.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-10-19 01:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Colin Powell is thought of very highly and is very much a household name. How old are you? Because during the 90s, he was a very, very big contender for the GOP nomination, the subject of a very popular Chris Rock bit, and the man that the Bush administration selected as the celebrity of their cabinet. Colin Powell is big, and to military minded voters, his confidence holds power.

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Haha, 28.  No offense intended, but no one is voting based on the 1990s.  If they were, Hillary would be our nominee.  Everyone that I know that is younger than 40 is totally indifferent to Powell.  Maybe a case could be made that older (much older?) voters do care about him.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-10-19 05:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

The greatest value of this endorsement is that the media is going to gush over this for days, denying McCain precious news cycles about Joe the fake plumber or whatever gimmick they are coming up with this week...

by LordMike 2008-10-19 11:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

don't think so...I think it will be dead after today. Colin powell is just not that important to anyone. Case in point, his several attempts to redeem himself by rewriting history - in essence dissing bush, have been no impact snoozers.

by gak 2008-10-19 11:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

And I think it's HUGE and will have a definite impact with many undecideds. I'm really excited that he did this.

by veggiemuffin 2008-10-19 11:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I admire Colin Powell.  If the choice were Powell and Obama, I would consider Powell, although I wouldn't say for certain that I would vote for him.  He is a fine communicator, although not charismatic, and he makes sense when he talks.  I think a large segment of middle-of-the-road voters will listen to what he says.  

Powell has both military and diplomatic experience.  He is probably to only African American in the US whose endorsement might sway a significant number of white Americans.  

This will help Obama, and he probably didn't need it.

by flatblade 2008-10-19 11:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I like Colin Powel

His place in history is well deserved.

by dtaylor2 2008-10-19 12:04PM | 0 recs
Speaking of

the race card, anyone catch this gem at FoxNews.com a few days ago?

Colin Powell showed off his hip-hop moves at an 'Africa Rising' celebration in London Tuesday, fueling speculation that the former secretary of state is about to endorse Barack Obama for president.

Hip-hop moves = Obama endorsement, naturally.

Link: http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/15/ colin-powell-fuels-speculation-possible- endorsement/

by Koan 2008-10-19 12:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Speaking of

It occurred to me last night with the Sarah Palin rap that any of the other three candidates would have made a stab at doing it themselves and not worried about it. Then I realized, too, that Obama could never have been asked to do that rap because it would be portrayed the wrong way. Sad.

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 02:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Predictable that conservatives would try and make this about race.

Sad, but predictable.

by liberalj 2008-10-19 01:40PM | 0 recs
Buchanan did just now.

<blockquoteThe Republicans may try to play the race card in an attempt to discount the importance of today's news,</blockquote>

Just a few minutes ago, on the Sunday Hardball, Pat Buchanan did just that.  Joan Walsh said, "Pat, I am so sorry you went there."

by Dumbo 2008-10-19 01:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

It occurs to me that I was totally right a week or two ago. I said that if McCain's strategy and unwillingness to deal with his unruly crowds kept up, then some high-profile, well-respected Republicans would speak up. Colin Powell did. If it continues, he won't be alone.

by vcalzone 2008-10-19 02:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Oh man, I'm such a west wing nerd.  I read this whole post and thought it was a great point, but all I can think of is that it's Arnie Vinick, not Arthur.  

by ryharrin 2008-10-19 02:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008
And Christopher Buckley and Christopher Hitchens endorsed Obama because? Guess they have some black blood.
by royce 2008-10-19 02:28PM | 0 recs
Fareed Zakaria

Anybody catch Fareed Zakaria  on CNN today?

Fareed Zakaria endorsed Obama at the end of his Sunday international news discussion show. I was surprised! I didn't think Television news celebrities did that. I certainly wouldn't expect Wolf Blitzer to openly endorse anyone.

Maybe I'm wrong.
Under The LobsterScope

by btchakir 2008-10-19 02:56PM | 0 recs
if Powell would have won,

then why didn't the GOP actually nominate him? If he had run, the entire right wing of the GOP would have died. There were more racists around 12 years ago, which would have hurt Powell immensly when you consider his left of center views, de-energizing the party, and the right wing racists. His stance on gays in the military would have brought liberals out in force against him. His policies if he had tried to go economically right, would have been simply linked to Gingrich. i'm not gonna take those polls which show he would have won, because he was never in the campaign at any point of time. That poll only reflects the media image of him at the time.

Second, why is Colin Powell so revered? Anyone wonder why? He sold the war, and prevented gays from being in the military. I strongly suspect if he were white, he'd be just another neo-con. This is NOT playing the race card. Its playing the truth card. He is simply a "magic negro" in the mold of Bagger Vance.

by Lakrosse 2008-10-19 03:13PM | 0 recs
Re: if Powell would have won,

Powell is a Vietnam veteran medal winner.  My dad, who is also a Vietnam veteran, who is voting for Obama in major part because he doesn't want McCain anywhere near the White House, thinks that Powell's endorsement is a major coup for Obama.  This will play well with other veterans.

by anonevent 2008-10-19 05:27PM | 0 recs
Re: if Powell would have won,

I don't mean to imply that people will switch.  His endorsement will make veterans more comfortable with Obama.

My dad does not in any way support the Iraq war.  He has thought it was wrong to go in since day one.  But he also does not deal in absolutes.  No one is perfect, and no situation is every cut and dry.

by anonevent 2008-10-19 05:34PM | 0 recs
Colin Powell, 1968

Trying to cover up war crimes

Reported by the awarding winning former AP/Newsweek reporter, Robert Parry:

"A letter had been written by a young specialist fourth class named Tom Glen, who had served in an Americal mortar platoon and was nearing the end of his Army tour. In the letter to Gen. Creighton Abrams, the commander of all U.S. forces in Vietnam, Glen accused the Americal division of routine brutality against civilians...

Powell's Response
The letter's troubling allegations were not well received at Americal headquarters.
Major Powell undertook the assignment to review Glen's letter, but did so without questioning Glen or assigning anyone else to talk with him. Powell simply accepted a claim from Glen's superior officer that Glen was not close enough to the front lines to know what he was writing about, an assertion Glen denies.
After that cursory investigation, Powell drafted a response on Dec. 13, 1968. He admitted to no pattern of wrongdoing. Powell claimed that U.S. soldiers in Vietnam were taught to treat Vietnamese courteously and respectfully. The Americal troops also had gone through an hour-long course on how to treat prisoners of war under the Geneva Conventions, Powell noted.
"There may be isolated cases of mistreatment of civilians and POWs," Powell wrote in 1968. But "this by no means reflects the general attitude throughout the Division." Indeed, Powell's memo faulted Glen for not complaining earlier and for failing to be more specific in his letter.
"In direct refutation of this [Glen's] portrayal," Powell concluded, "is the fact that relations between Americal soldiers and the Vietnamese people are excellent."
www.consortiumnews.com

by neaguy 2008-10-19 03:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Call 911.  You've OD'd on STUPID pills again.

by fogiv 2008-10-19 03:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

Powell's eloquent endorsement is a definite plus to Obama's chances.  Whatever they may be thinking there are clearl 5-10% undecideds out there.  They are clealry unhappy with McCain, yet uncertain about Obama's (relative) lack of experience, youth, etc.  At least some of these voters (maybe 1-2% of likely voters) may be swayed by Powell's endorsement.

by scottpeartree 2008-10-19 04:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

I can tell who has dealt with the military, especially the over-40 military people.  And by this I mean former members of the military.

This is HUGE news.  People who have served respect Powell.  Period.  Not all of them see him the same way, but he is not the same as so many others...think of him is the same light as Eisenhower, and you get a fairly good idea.  

Yeah, he really screwed up on Iraq.  And I believe, as a former military man, that he really DOES regret it.  And I feel he does feel shamed at being duped.  Military people who are military first, political second have a VERY hard time crossing over into either politics or corporate settings without getting blind-sided.  Does this excuse his mistake?  No.  But I am SURE every one of the 4000+ deaths haunt him right now and that is why he is doing what is right with this endorsement.

And many people in the middle/undecided camp will look over his endorsement and it will make them feel a lot more comfortable with Obama.  This is a GOOD thing.  Hell, I wanted Powell to be asked to be VP!  And I do think that giving Powell a seat in the Obama admin would be VERY good in looking non-partisan AND give Powell a chance to make amends for the giant barrel of S$#T he stepped in under King George III.

If you want to know more as to why I thnk this, I will be happy to expound.  I just don't want to go on and on about it for no good reason.  :)

by Hammer1001 2008-10-19 06:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Colin Powell: 1996 and 2008

*The man the Republican Party wanted to be its standard-bearer in 1996 has endorsed the man the Democratic Party chose as its standard-bearer in 2008.  The closest comparison in my mind might be 1940 Republican Presidential nominee Wendell Willkie accepting a prominent role in the FDR administration"*

Or maybe the man who the Democrats actually did choose for VP on their ticket in 2000 campaigning relentlessly for the Republicans just 8 years later?

Realignments are slow and need many reinforcements.  Socially liberal, fiscally conservative Republicans in places like affluent suburbs have been tilting away from Republicans steadily.  Powell is popular and well respected in these communities, and this is another reinforcement for them that if the Democratic party is safe enough for Powell it can be acceptable for them too.

by cat 2008-10-19 06:59PM | 0 recs

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