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. Brian Rich

    Colin Powell is one of the most intelligent men in the United States.

    October 19, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  2. SHELLI1313

    This is a momentous movement One of the Greatest Military Men is the United States and an Honest forth right persons in the Republican party. Powell got out of the wmd mess before it got really nasty like it is now. He understands that these are very bad Economic times and we need a person in the Oval Office that is Calm and not erratic, able to listen to opposing views and not step on them but check them out and move on them if they are sound. That Obama is thinking and concerned about America and Americans. And that he is a Christian and a very honorable Man.

    October 19, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  3. Alameda Chris

    A much better decision than your decision to invade Iraq!

    October 19, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  4. Sam

    Response to Rob: Well...there may be other people who may endorse because they are vying for cabinet positions; I don't buy that argument with Powell...He has integrity; he resigned his cabinet position, remember, when probably his suggestions were bulldozed by the ilks of Rice and Cheney.

    Btw...I am neither a Caucasian nor a black, so you can't "color" code my response as biased by race...

    October 19, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  5. digy

    Finally!!! It wasn't any surprise that he endorsed Obama. I was just waiting for him to do so.

    October 19, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  6. Lorrie

    I hope people will really listen to the reasons General Powell is endorsing Obama and why he has concerns, not only about the tone of the McCain campaign, but also the direction the GOP is choosing to take.

    I'm a former Republican (now Independent) that no longer even recognizes my former party.

    Thank you, General Powell, for your service and for your strength to speak the truth.

    October 19, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  7. Deb

    A truly credible endorsement from an intelligent, credible Republican. It only solidifies my reason to vote for Obama.

    Dick Lugar will be Obama's Secretary of Defense. I hope Colin Powell is Secretary of State again.

    October 19, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  8. Juanito

    very powerful and well reasoned endorsement. God bless genera Powell for actually putting country first.

    October 19, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  9. Hope in Georgia

    It was said by McCain that foreign policy was one of Obama's weak points. This endorsement should erase completely any argument that Obama isn't ready to lead abroad. I am waiting for November 5, when the USA will once again begin to regain respect around the world that has been severely damaged by George Bush. Thank you, General Powell.

    October 19, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  10. ENOUGH False Supperiority

    The Poster .... "If you like the last 2 years.... vote Obama " .... wrote ....

    – – – – – – –
    Nobody will say it, but you can't tell me this is not another prominent black endorsing a fellow black candidate.
    – – – – – – –

    Sorry fella, we won't take your race bait.

    Obama is head-n-shoulders more qualified to be President than McCain. That's why Powell endorsed him. He's voting for the smart guys this time.

    McCain is not the brightest bulb in the box and Palin is not the sharpest tack. The General put country ahead of party.

    There, I said it!

    October 19, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  11. The Bluest Skies are in Seattle

    francisco ? /Are you voting for the one that drove you in the ditch or one that is working to get you out of the ditch how about voting for the one that spends their time solving problems compared to one that s fabricating lies ?

    October 19, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    I hope you all feel the same way one year from now. I hope you support socialism. And I certainly hope you don't mind sharing your income with people who don't share your work ethic !!! In 4 years, we will have to reclaim this country. For the first time in my life,.... I am a very concerned and a not so proud American !!! I am watching my country being taken away from me !!

    October 19, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |

    So..um...when the majority of the African-American community voted for Bill Clinton twice...was that because Clinton really IS black?

    And what about when they also voted for Kerry? He's straight up from the hood, right?

    And also when they voted for Gore? You all know Gore. He's definetely a "brotha!"

    Or perhaps all these candidates just use the same dermatologist as Michael Jackson?

    McCain trolls: please get a life!

    October 19, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  14. Ana

    Honestly, McCain is not the same man of eight years ago and Powell knows that. His picking of Sarah Palin, who know nothing about the world at large other was probably the icing on the cake for him....

    October 19, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  15. Leah DiMarco, Texas

    Thank you General Powell – God bless you, and your family, God bless America, and God bless our troops!

    O and Joe '08

    October 19, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  16. P... Juice

    Actually I would be skeptical if he endorsed McCain, this way it was pretty predictable who he was going to endorse.
    Heck when this came up couple of weeks ago, I made a prediction he would endorse Obama.
    However I dont want to take too much credit, as I said pretty predictable

    October 19, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  17. FormerAlaskanFemale

    Mr. Powell, I have always had a great deal of respect for you. Especially your role as a defense leader; I have even greater respect for you now, because I know that a lot of people in your party are not going to understand your decision. However, I think your explanation and rationale are objective and come with a great deal of merit.

    Should a President Obama invite you to serve in his cabinet, I think this will further demonstrate his level of prudence in governing this country, and although you are not looking for another job in government, I appreciate the fact that you would consider it another opportunity to serve your fellow Americans.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 19, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  18. t

    i think its amazing that someone would discredit Colin Powell's endorsement of Obama as another prominent black supporting a black candidate when in fact Powell has been supporting white candidates for years. if you can show me documentation that Powell supported Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson run for president then YOU WILL HAVE A VALID POINT.
    and if not then maybe you might need to be truthful and admit that you are a racist. because it really" took longer than 2 years to ruin our country"

    October 19, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  19. I'll bet you a dollar

    I'll bet he wouldn't be endorsing Nobama if he were white.

    October 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  20. Lucy

    Mr. Colin Powell. It takes more than an average man to step up and do the right thing. In your career, you have transcended the lines between parties, I would have voted for you, too, in the nineties. Obama will be the catalyst to move this country forward, and crystallize the greatness of this country. We are all Americans!

    October 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  21. Serving My Country, TX

    Sir, yes sir! As an active duty Army officer I appreciate Gen. Colin Powell's expertise and judgment. Contrary to what the McCain camp would have the electorate believe, he (McCain) does not have the solid backing of the military. We have seen too many comrades go down while fighting a war with no defined cause or objective. It's time to bring our troops home.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  22. whatever

    @francisco siqueiros

    People who don't think do that sort of thing.

    October 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  23. MeKu,

    General Powell I listen to your O-R-D-E-R-S!
    Country First!
    Obama/Biden '08

    October 19, 2008 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  24. Kathy

    Personally, I have always respected Mr. Powell and had often told people that if he were to run for President, He'd be someone I thought I could trust. Boy, was I wrong. I never thought he would endorse someone with as little patriotism as BO, Even with his ties to radical groups. Shame on you Mr. Powell

    October 19, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  25. Vivian

    Well, I and my family have a big respect for General Colin Powel. Now , i can see that Barack Obama is God sent to American people. I can read deeply meanning into his reasons of endorsement. Colin Powel thanks alot for leting me to know early, God bless you. Country First. Not Party.

    October 19, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
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