SYou can add another endorsement to Barack Obama's list: former Secretary of State Colin Powell has come out to pledge his support for the candidate from Illinois, stating that he feels Obama would be a "transformational president," and that if Obama is elected, it would "not just electrify our country, it would electrify the world."Powell, who served under George W. Bush until 2005, turned away from his own party in order to endorse Obama, claiming that his dissatisfaction with John McCain sprung from McCain's difficulties handling economic issues. ""Almost every day there was a different approach to the problem and that concerned me," Powell said, "You got the sense that he didn't have a complete grasp of the economic problems that we had." Powell also apparently had reservations over the selection of Gov. Sarah Palin, stating, "I don't believe she is ready to be president of the United States, which is the job of the vice-president." Whether Powell's endorsement will make any difference at this point is yet to be seen; speculation that he would endorse Obama has been circling for the past few weeks, so today's announcement isn't a tremendous surprise. But it does speak to the fact that someone who was involved in an administration (and who has since distanced himself from it) that has led the country in a downhill direction over the past 8 years is standing up to endorse across party lines. It was rumored at one point that Powell might have been a vice-presidential candidate for John McCain, but unlike some people who claim maverick bipartisanship, Powell appears to have endorsed the candidate he feels is best qualified, and not the one who shares the tiny R after his name. As Powell told CNN last February, "I will vote for the candidate I think can do the best job in America—whether that candidate is a Republican or Democrat or an independent." Apparently, he feels that candidate is Barack Obama. If nothing else, Powell has just provided America with another example of the importance of voting based on qualifications instead of affiliations, and that might just be the best endorsement he can give. Colin Powell Backs Barack Obama [BBC News] Powell Rejects Democratic Convention Talk [AFP]
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