People have been expressing shock at the Colin Powell endorsement of Barack Obama. We need to get past it, it’s simply not the end of the world.
In my mind there was no shock, I personally assumed all along Powell would endorse Obama. Partly due to race and partly due to politics.
Colin Powell is not a conservative, he claims to be a Republican but so do Lincoln Chafee (he endorsed Obama also), Arlen Specter, and Chuck Hagel (also endorsed Obama). In my book, Powell is barely a Rhino.
Also, although I could be wrong, I don’t think the endorsement really matters much. One of the commentators on Fox put it best today in that the endorsement says more about Powell than Obama. I think a lot of voters don’t even really know who Powell is and even fewer care about the endorsement. Keep in mind this previous blog of mine in which Obama supporters thought Sarah Palin was Obama’s running mate, he was pro-life, and advocated keeping the troops in Iraq.
Further, I don’t think he has a reputation as a conservative with voters and therefore the endorsement was not a huge surprise. I think the Joe Lieberman endorsement of McCain probably carried more weight because he has ran on the Democratic ticket. It is sad but likely true that the Ludacris endorsement probably helped Obama more than the Powell endorsement did.
Finally, I am of a mind that very few political endorsements make a big difference in a Presidential campaign. You occasionally get a blockbuster endorsement but they are far and few in between. Endorsements seem to matter more in primaries. In other words, I think a Democrat would care more if Powell endorsed Obama over Clinton than a Republican or independent cares about Powell’s endorsement of Obama over McCain.
I’m not trying to diminish Powell, he has had a career full of honorable service to the country, and we owe him a debt of gratitude for this. I also don’t want to see him demonized like the left has done to Joe Lieberman. I just don’t think the endorsement was a game changer.
I don’t think the endorsement was out of left field, so to speak and we need to just roll with the flow. This wasn’t an October surprise.