Famous and well liked Republican Colin Powell has endorsed liberal Democrat Barack Obama, or do I repeat myself? My “lefty” father was excited and quick to tell me the news yesterday. In return I retorted, “So now that Colin Powell is on your side he can be forgiven for pounding the Iraq war drum to the world five years ago?” Or perhaps I was off base. Maybe this endorsement tells us more about Obama than it does Powell.
There should be no question now about the nature of Obama’s foreign policy. He’s an interventionist. He always was an interventionist, but for some reason he was labeled the “peace” candidate. The only disagreement between McCain and Obama on foreign policy is which far off land gets a visit by the American military first.
In the endorsement Powell called Obama “a transformational” figure. It seems he forgot to put the word “fake” in there. Then again, the truth was never something Colin Powell worried too much about. If he wanted to endorse a truly “transformational” candidate he would have endorsed Ron Paul in the primaries and Bob Barr today. Obama is no more transformational than… well.. John McCain.
Suddenly it becomes a bit more difficult for the Obama camp to attack McCain with their “Bush twin” argument. It wouldn’t shock me to hear McCain use the Powell endorsement to help refute that argument. As in, “My friends, here is a little straight talk for ya, Obama likes to compare me to Bush, but I’m not the one who received the endorsement from Bush’s former Secretary of State! No, my friends, I’m a real maverick”. This tactic by McCain backfires easily if anyone looks at the list of his own endorsements. The McCain camp may not care though. After all McCain actually called himself a “federalist” during the last debate. I waited for the laugh track that never came.
At this point it looks like McCain may be an afterthought come January 20th, 2009. Powell’s endorsement may or may not have something to do with that future. I’ll leave talk of the effect of the endorsement to the pundits.
I view it as just further confirmation that we live in a country ruled by one party with two names.