Colin Powell blasts N.C. voting law in front of governor who signed it
August 22nd, 2013
02:19 PM ET
9 years ago

Colin Powell blasts N.C. voting law in front of governor who signed it

(CNN) – A new voter ID law in North Carolina will end up hurting Republicans among minority voters, former Secretary of State Colin Powell told a gathering of business executives in the state Thursday.

The retired four-star general, speaking in Raleigh, made his remarks immediately following a session featuring North Carolina's Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, who was a supporter of the new voting measure and signed it into law earlier this month.

"I want to see policies that encourage every American to vote, not make it more difficult to vote," Powell said, according to the Raleigh News and Observer.

"It immediately turns off a voting block the Republican Party needs," Powell continued, according to the paper. "These kinds of actions do not build on the base. It just turns people away."

CNN affiliate WTVD-TV reported that cameras were not allowed to film Powell's remarks.

The North Carolina law, which goes into effect ahead of the 2016 elections, includes a requirement that all voters present a valid government-issued photo ID at polls. Supporters say the measure is necessary to prevent ineligible people from casting ballots, but opponents contend such laws unfairly discriminate against minority voters.

Powell argued Thursday that allegations of voter fraud were overblown.

"How can it be widespread and undetected?" he wondered.

Powell served as the nation's top diplomat under former President George W. Bush, though he endorsed President Barack Obama in both 2008 and 2012. In January, Powell said in an interview he was still a Republican, but that the party needed to rethink some of its stances after losing two presidential elections.

Filed under: Colin Powell
soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    All the examples people have been supplying of " voter fraud" amount to nothing more than rumors, opinions and innuendo. NOTHING in recent history indicates fraud in any major race that resulted in a stolen election.

    August 22, 2013 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  2. Econ301

    "Rick McDaniel

    Powell is another phoney Republican turned Democrat liar. He is not to be trusted in any way."

    And this right here is why the Republicans are going to keep loosing...

    August 22, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  3. skinsfan66

    There is widespread voter fraud but it is ignore by the Holder Injustice Dept. Just lke the Black Panthers in Philli with billy clubs standing in front of a polling place. Holder ignored it. The 'Lamestream' Media is not going to report it because they are the chief defender of the left and the Obama admistration. If they did their job they would expose the massive voter fraud. Take a look at the Al Frankin election. They kept finding votes – all for Frankin until they found enough for him to win.

    August 22, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  4. S.B. Stein

    Powell is an example of an American who understands what needs to get done. He did a good job where ever he served, but he had his name tarnished by the George W. Bush adminstration.

    August 22, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  5. thinking outside the box

    Gee your right Powell maybe we should allow driver license without proof of Id and welfare. Heck lets get rid of ID altogether because it discriminates against minority.

    If it is so important to have ID to vote, like a driver's license, than why is it that ID laws of these states are not allowing the use of identification needed (i.e. birth certificate and social security card) to obtain the "accepted" ID's. If a driver's licence is needed to vote, and you need a birth certificate and social security card for a driver's license, then why can't you just use a birth certificate and driver's license to vote? And if you argue that you can fake the birth certificate and social security card then driver's licenses cannot be considered a secure form of ID to vote. The only logic behind the cherry picking of ID's is to allow certain segments of the population easy access to voting and making it difficult for others.

    August 22, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  6. Abbey

    Any measure that stops illegal voting is good for the country. Clearly this ex-general is wrong, much like his speech on chemical weapons to the UN.

    August 22, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  7. Pander Bear

    So the crowd that screamed that the President's birth certificate was a fake is screaming that voters must show proper identification. What's to stop them from claiming that the voter's ID is a "fake" as well?

    August 22, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  8. tea party days are numbered

    republicans mantra: if you can't dazzle 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with bullcrap.

    August 22, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  9. Name Uche Agonsi

    If there are more than 10million illegal immigrants in US, and maybe half of the figure are not illegible to vote, the Supreme Court decision must have disenfranchised the rest 5million people from voting. Most from records are for Democrats. This is how ruinous the SOPUS judgement is for Democratic base. This requires urgent attention.

    August 22, 2013 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
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