Former Secretary of State, General Colin Powell was interviewed on Sunday by David Gregory on NBC's Meet the Press and had plenty to say. General Powell gave a spirited defense of former United States Senator Chuck Hagel and explained why he believes that Chuck Hagel would and should become the next Secretary of Defense.
General Powell believes that Chuck Hagel “gets confirmed.” Powell added that "I think he’s ultimately superbly qualified, based on his overall record, based on his service to the country, based on how he feels about troops and veterans and families. I think he will do a great job as secretary of defense.”
Powell also defended Hagel's stance on Israel "you’ll see that in the confirmation hearings, but it doesn’t mean you have to agree with every single position that the Israeli government takes.”
"Whether or not it's in our overall interest to have these kinds of weapons in the hands of Americans who might not be responsible is a question we have to answer," Powell said. "How much are we really giving up if we said this kind of weapon should not be readily available to anybody who wants to buy one? And so I think we are at a very important point in our national dialogue on this."
Powell is looking forward to Vice President Joe Biden's formal recommendations on curbing gun violence. VP Biden's report is expected Tuesday.
Perhaps Colin Powell's strongest comments came about right-wing Republicans and what Colin Powell viewed as "racist" attacks upon President Obama.
Powell called it a "a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party," Powell said. "What do I mean by that? What I mean by that is they still sort of look down on minorities." He specifically cited Sarah Palin on her "shuckin' and jivin" remarks. Powell also pointed to former George H.W. Bush chief-of-staff and Mitt Romney surrogate, John Sununu. Powell cited Sununu for saying that saying the President was "lazy" in the first debate.
"He didn't say he was slow, he was tired, he didn't do well; he said he was 'lazy.' Now, it may not mean anything to most Americans, but to those of us who are African Americans, the second word is "shiftless," and then there's a third word that goes along with it," added Powell concerning Sununu's remarks.
Without mentioning Donald Trump by name, he also called out Republicans for even allowing the birther movement to exist. "The whole birther movement: Why do senior Republican leaders tolerate this kind of discussion within the party?"
Powell said that he thinks "what the Republican Party needs to do now is take a very hard look at itself and understand that the country has changed. The country is changing demographically. And if the Republican Party does not change along with that demographic, they're going to be in trouble."
Powell said he still considers himself a Republican. "I'm a moderate, but I'm still a Republican."
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John is the author of an award-winning book, the 2010 Winner of the USA National Best Book award for African American studies, published by The Elevator Group Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots: How Barack Obama, Two Bookstore Owners, and 300 Volunteers did it. Also available an eBook on Amazon. John is also a member of the Society of Midland Authors and is a book reviewer of political books for the New York Journal of Books