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Powell may endorse Obama in TV interview

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October 17, 2008

Powell may endorse Obama in TV interview

Tom Baldwin

General Colin Powell, the former Secretary of State, is preparing for a live TV interview on Sunday amid intense speculation that he is ready to endorse Barack Obama's presidential campaign.

Aides from John McCain's campaign are bracing themselves for another damaging blow with one being quoted suggesting that such an announcement from Mr Powell would be "personally embarrassing" for the Republican nominee - with whom he has been friends for 25 years - and would "create momentum against us”.

Mr Powell, who himself once considered a bid to become America's first black president, worked for the last three Republican administrations and has strong credentials on national security policy.

Since quitting as Secretary of State in 2005, however, he has distanced himself from President Bush while dropping hints recently that he might back the Democratic nominee in this election.

Last month he said electing a black president would send an "electrifying" message to the world before adding that he would base his decision on which candidate "blends a right measure of experience and judgment".

In London this week, where he attended the Africa Rising festival, Mr Powell took the stage at the Royal Albert Hall to declare: "I stand before you tonight as an African American.

"Many people have said to me you became Secretary of State of the USA, is it still necessary to say that you are an African American or that you are black, and I say, 'yes' - so that we can remind our children. It took a lot of people struggling to bring me to this point in history."

Mr McCain continues to trail Mr Obama by an average of 6.8 per cent in recent polls, although the margin becomes tighter in surveys that do not assume a surge in turnout among voters more inclined to be Democrats.

Full stroy, source: The Times

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