(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.
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.
Colin Powell is one of the few Republicans that I’ve always respected; save the decision that he made to join George W. Bush’s cabinet during the chimp-in-chief’s first term in office … but he made the wise decision to leave the administration.
I think that Colin Powell would be one of those outstanding across-the-aisle choices for Obama to put on his own Cabinet, preferably in the same Secretary of State role in which he has already served. The foreign policy credentials are there, as is a more cautious approach to military intervention.
So, General Powell, please don’t give me any reason to re-think my admiration.