This morning, long term Colin Powell aide and former State Department Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson sent me a note seeming to downgrade the chance that General Powell might endorse Barack Obama (or John McCain).
By the way, this is how I see tomorrow’s TV appearance.
I see CLP making comments about the financial situation, about the national security and foreign policy issues of the day, and, most importantly, about the need not to return to 1968 (RFK and MLK, Jr. were assassinated, as you’ll recall) and to remain calm and appeal to the better angels of our nature — and not be saying things like “Kill him” or “He’s a terrorist” about the candidates.
But no endorsement. The endorsement part is being played up so the maximum amount of people will watch what he believes is the greater message about tolerance, etc…
If Powell offered such a message to the nation — particularly given his wife Alma’s concern about Powell’s possible assassination had he run for President in 2000 — then that message to the country would be more important in many ways than an endorsement.
Interestingly though, David Corn uses other commentary from Wilkerson to argue that a Powell endorsement at this point in the campaign is reaching a higher degree of probability.
I’m sticking with what I wrote yesterday: Powell “might” endorse someone, but I just don’t know. I hope he does, and if he endorses Obama — then McCain has something else to blame Bill Kristol for.
– Steve Clemons