October 19th, 2008
09:24 AM ET
10 years ago

Powell endorses Barack Obama

Powell endorsed Obama Sunday.

Powell endorsed Obama Sunday.

(CNN) - Former Secretary of State Colin Powell announced Sunday that he will be voting for Sen. Barack Obama, citing the Democrat's "ability to inspire" and the "inclusive nature of his campaign."

"I think he is a transformational figure, he is a new generation coming onto the world stage, onto the American stage, and for that reason I'll be voting for Sen. Barack Obama," Powell said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

Powell said he was concerned about what he characterized as a recent negative turn of Republican candidate Sen. John McCain's campaign, such as the campaign's attempts to tie Obama to former 1960s radical Bill Ayers.

Powell, a retired U.S. general and a Republican, was once seen as a possible presidential candidate himself.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (959 Responses)
  1. I Just Said Thanks, but No Thanks to Another 4 Years of g.o.p. corruption, arrogance and incompetence

    It would urge all "Undecided" or "Leaning" voters to listen to what Powell says.
    Senator Obama really does offer a way forward for everyone.

    Now, I'm off to the phone banks.


    October 19, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  2. francheska ;-)

    Colin Powell did a great job of telling the American people why he feels the way he does. I am glad he came out for Obama.

    October 19, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. voter

    this is huge for those in the military community. Also, Powell made a good point that the republicans are not inclusive. they are alienating the moderate republicans because the republican party as a whole sold out to the evangelicals. this makes moderate republicans uncomfortable. if they don't feel that their party has a place for them, Powell may have planted the seed of considering voting Obama because he is inclusive.

    October 19, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  4. Change Is Coming

    I am a huge Barack Obama supporter. However, I am not a Democrat, nor Repub, nor Ind. I am someone who picks my candidate bases on their stands on issues. Colin Powell is the one & only person that I ever had respect for out of the worst administration ever. He loves this country, and makes all his decisions based on the good of the country, hence, he left the Bush administration. Anyone who has any love for their country or integrity would. So to have one of the most respected voice in Washington on board the Obama movement speaks volumes on "Who Barack Obama Is." He doesnt endorse based on party, as a lot of other Repub politicians whom endorsed Barack do either. This should be all America has to know come Nov. 4. Our country is at stake. Barack will have Repubs in his administration for bi-partisan leadership. He is the change we need. Right Colin? Thank you. Now let's get Barack Obama in office and get our country back from rich, corrupt businessmen, Bush, Cheney, McCain, etc. Its up to us Nov 4.

    October 19, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  5. EZ

    Gerneral Powell I salute you as a person with integrety.

    October 19, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  6. Eleanor

    this is a most prestigious endorsement for Obama from a well respected and honorable man
    the ONLY member that came from the Bush administration with any integrity!!
    Colin Powell knows a respectful and dignified man when he sees one
    Senator Obama-Biden 08

    October 19, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  7. Pippa

    Good for Colin Powell.
    He also endorsed Dick Cheney didn't he?

    October 19, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  8. Thomas from Missouri

    Not surprising. Polls have shown that there was a 90% chance he would support Obama.

    October 19, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  9. Dan in Akron, Ohio

    I think that Colin Powell is a great and distinguished Republican leader. For him to endorse Obama really says alot. I think Mccain as well as the rest of the world has been shocked and awed. Go-bama!!

    October 19, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  10. Martin- colorado


    Obama/Biden 08

    Swing voter in Colorado

    October 19, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  11. kiop

    Why am I not surprised? This goes to show how racist Colin Powell really is.. He betrayed his party for an extreme leftist liberal – the complete polar opposite of everything conservatism stands for. All because of race.. All the years of respect I've had for him is out the window. Distrustful. DisgRACEful..

    October 19, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  12. Any fabre

    An approval from heaven, I must say. Thank you Mr. Powell.

    October 19, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  13. txgal44

    Colin Powell said that Obama will be an "exceptional president". Thank you Mr. Powell because tomorrow is early voting in Texas and I can't wait to voter for the exceptional Barack Obama.

    October 19, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  14. Arden

    Thank you Colin Powell. Now if you would appear once or twice with Barack Obama on the stump just maybe some of these very confused so called nuts that the John McCain's campaign has turned into very dangerous, ugly americans, will wake up and realize that what they are doing is so wrong. God bless you Colin Powell.

    October 19, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  15. Anthony Swygert

    America thanks you for your service, Mr. Powell. And Obama and the rest of us thank you for your support!!

    October 19, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  16. Shawn

    I see General Powell is putting country first, instead of party.

    Good for him!

    October 19, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. chippyarm

    It intrigues me how because Colin Powell , a man of color, endorses Obama that he is doing so because of color. Colin Powell was, and is, a man who has served his country well. Perhaps the idea of color has many Republicans angry and crying racism because they have in fact played their hidden agenda for so many years. If Powell endorsed McCain, would you be complaining. Answer that honestly. The truth will guide you.

    October 19, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  18. Bill, West Palm Beach.

    It all boils down to do we trust Sarah Palin or do we trust the great
    Four star General and worthy Patriot General Colin Powell?

    All I can say is Yes sir, General Powell.

    October 19, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  19. ginger

    I watched the interview this morning and I agree with Mr. Powell. John McCain has become a man who's only goal is winning. I'm sure McCain does not want to lose a second time; however, he's playing to peoples unfounded fears and he is not bringing America together. McCains is further tearing America part just because he wants to win. This is not "Country First" It's win first.

    October 19, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  20. go vote

    There is hope for all of us
    I really am inspired.

    October 19, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  21. NM Voter

    Powell understands his importance at this critical time. Too bad it took him so long to step away from george and make a strong independent decison

    October 19, 2008 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  22. If you like the last 2 years.... vote Obama

    Nobody will say it, but you can't tell me this is not another prominent black endorsing a fellow black candidate. By the way, I think General Powell could and should be the first black president, and I would vote for him. I am not racist, but let's be truthful.

    October 19, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  23. Rob

    Terrific. It is always great when government officials endorse each other as it really adds to credibility. I mean, who else is better qualified, to tell us who is qualified other than someone from the government? I admire Collin Powell, but this so called endorsement probably comes with a position in the new cabinet. Perhaps Defense Secretary?
    I have nothing bad to say about Powell, but "change" is the vehicle upon which Obama is running and all I see is more of the same.

    Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

    October 19, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  24. Charles

    I respect Gen. Powell so much.He is one of the statesmen who can tell the truth without being partisan.His endorsement has just turned my wife to Sen.Obama.A lot of people respect and trust this man.

    October 19, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  25. No2RepubGimmicks

    It's not just that Mr. Powell endorsed Obama...

    I think EVERYONE (including McCain supporters) should watch and listen to Mr. Powell's ENTIRE statement on why he is voting for Obama...

    It really, really puts things into perspective.

    I like John McCain a lot too, and have lots of repsect for him. I even supported him in 2000... but, he's now surrounded by some very ugly people who are willing to do and say anything to win.

    October 19, 2008 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
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