(CNN) - Former Bush Secretary of State Colin Powell said Monday that he has not yet decided which candidate to back in this year’s presidential race.
The election of an African-American president “would be electrifying,” Powell told a George Washington University audience, “but at the same time [I have to] make a judgment here on which would be best for America.
“I have been watching both individuals, I know them both extremely well, and I have not decided who I am going to vote for. And I'm interested to see what the debates are going to be like because we have to get off of this ‘lipstick on a pig’ stuff and get into issues,” he said.
Powell's full comments will air on “The Next President: A World of Challenges” this Saturday night at 9pm ET and again Sunday at 2pm ET.
Last month, as the retired general’s office denied a report that he had decided to publicly back Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention, several sources told CNN’s John King that Powell was still undecided. “As always, he is holding his cards close and waiting for more information," one adviser close to Powell told CNN’s John King.
Earlier this year, Powell told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that he was weighing an endorsement of a Democrat or independent candidate. “I am keeping my options open at the moment,” said Powell.
“I have voted for members of both parties in the course of my adult life. And as I said earlier, I will vote for the candidate I think can do the best job for America, whether that candidate is a Republican, a Democrat, or an independent,” he added.
Powell also offered praise for Obama, calling him an “exciting person on the political stage.
“He has energized a lot of people in America,” said Powell, who briefly weighed his own run for the White House in the mid-1990s. “He has energized a lot of people around the world. And so I think he is worth listening to and seeing what he stands for.”
Last month, a Powell adviser told CNN that "he likes and admires John McCain, and that would be a factor in anything he does if he decides to get more involved."
Another source close to Powell said that he has known McCain for more than three decades “and likes him, and is looking for a reason to vote for him. He hasn't found it yet."
This non-story brought to you by the new line of "faith-based merchandise", now available at BarackObama.com .
The world is watching and holding their breath. They are praying and wishing that Americans can once in their lives grow grey matter.
Obama the smart, fresh and sane choice!!!!!
Not only will an Obama victory be electrifying... think about how deflating a McCain victory will be to the country? & to the world? Most ppl would lose any hope they had for government that works.
Electrifying, along with his earlier comments, strongly suggests he is leaning toward Obama, to me.
This is a man I would have voted for. I trust his judgment.
McCain/Palin '08? ... Thanks, But No Thanks
Here is a man we can all respect. I wish HE were running!
Don't worry! I'm reading between the lines Powell..
The fact that Powell, a Republican, has not endorsed McCain/Palin reflects poorly on the GOP ticket. I'm a former Republican who not only has "had it" with where the party has taken this country, but am actually excited about Obama/Biden. Maybe Powell feels the same way.
someone should ask Sarah Palin to define "fundamentals of the economy" Let's see if she has an easier time explaining that then what the VP does or What the Bush Doctrine is!
Mr Powell state away from my next President the honorable Barack Obama.You are a disgrace for my country you sold us out with your misserables lies in front of the whole world in a way to invade Irak , by doing so you incriminate yourself in the murder of more than four thousand of our best soldiers of AMERICA,shame on you Mr Collin Powell
This only means one thing. He's voting for Obama but knows he'd be hated by his party if he thought for himself. It's a tough call but hopefully he'll pull through..... This is definitely pro-Obama news!
I am intrigued by how fast Obama got out to Colorado after Palin spoke this morning. Could he be any more obsessed over her? Good Lord, his campaign has fallen off-message completely.
What would have been cool if Obama chose Powell as his VP. Wow, now that would have been electrifying. However, Biden is a terrific pick. It demonstrates Obama's kine foresight and forward thinking.
That's great to hear. Yes, it will be electrifying. Not only McCain is lying , so is Palin. She is talking like Obama's VP more than McCain's. She was saying McCain and her are going to Washington and straighten out Wall Street and CEO's. Who is she kidding? They are in bed with Wall Strret and the CEO's. They want to cut corporate taxes, deregulate the financial sector and everything else. She is campaigning like a democrat but this fake talking points is not going to work. All advisors like Nancy whoever are talking nonsensical talking points – she is quoting unknown economists and blurting out bull.
PLEASE do we have to wonder who he is voting for. This election is a JOKE, it was the day the DEMOCRATS HEADS forced or TRIED to force us to vote for Obama, instead of Hillary the one the TRUE DEMOCRATS wanted. If it was not for some old DEMOCRATS that came running out to PROP Obama up everythime he failed in the primaries we would not be in this mess now.
"Powell said that he has known McCain for more than three decades “and likes him, and is looking for a reason to vote for him. He hasn't found it yet."
Powell is wise to wait and not act hastily. Having been scorched by Bush, I wouldn't be to quick to trust any Republican candidate if I were he...
Who cares? Is anyone going to vote for Mccain or Obama because Powell wants you to?
he'll be voting for obama.
C'mon General Powell, this would seal it once and for all.
I am tired of hearing the BS about Obama being a communist, a terrorist, and whatever else the deluded minions of the RNC come up with. A lot of people (including my very conservative father-in-law) look up to you.
Obama/Biden....the only ones who can bring change.
an “exciting person on the political stage."
“He has energized a lot of people in America,”
“He has energized a lot of people around the world. And so I think he is worth listening to and seeing what he stands for.”
NOBAMA may be a fresh face in politics, but what has he actually done for his country, what "change" has he brought to politics -congress – house – senate
everybody has to stop drinking the kool-aid, too much can be real bad for you
This is as close to a non-story as has been posted all week.
ATTENTION: Karl Rove is pandering between BOTH parties
because HE WORKS FOR FOX and he has been accused
of possibly having a conflict of interest between FOX NEWS
AND McCain-Palin ticket which, of course, it has been noted
that he had a lot of clout in choosing Palin.
GET THE REAL STORY ON Fox New's Karl Rove being involved
in the pick of Palin for McCain. GET THE REAL STORY on a–hole
ROVE!!!!!!! He has not changed!!! Give us a break CNN!!!!!
WE ARE RUNNING OUT OF TIME.!!!!!!
Obama, above all, should not be deterred from speaking about
issues! McCain has nothing to lose by antagonizing Obama, since
McCain has already talked about all that is on his and Palin's
agenda. All McCain Palin have le
OBAMA-BIDEN SHOULD TALK ABOUT ISSUES TO THE AMERICAN
Powell is backing Obama, he just can't publicly say it because he's a Republican and still has ties to Bush and the rest of the party. If he came out and publicly endorsed Obama that would prove how McCain and the rest of the Bush party is unfit for Washington.