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Thread: Colin Powell to Rush Limbaugh and Dick Cheney: It's MY party

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    Default Colin Powell to Rush Limbaugh and Dick Cheney: It's MY party

    Colin Powell to Limbaugh and Cheney: It's my party - Los Angeles Times



    The former secretary of State responds to his critics and warns that the Republican Party is turning off centrists.
    By Mike Dorning

    May 25, 2009

    Reporting from Washington — Former Secretary of State Colin Powell warned Sunday that ideological conservatives, particularly radio commentator Rush Limbaugh, have gained a hold over the Republican Party that risks driving the GOP into an extended exile from power.

    Powell cast his warnings in unusually personal terms as he answered recent charges from two champions of the Republican right -- Limbaugh and former Vice President Dick Cheney -- that he was no longer a Republican.

    "Rush will not get his wish, and Mr. Cheney was misinformed," said Powell, whose resume includes military advisor to President Reagan, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush's Cabinet. "I am still a Republican."

    Powell, a moderate who has been featured prominently over the years by GOP candidates trying to broaden their appeal, repeatedly clashed with Cheney during the George W. Bush administration. He bristled at critics' charge that he had left the party.

    "Neither [Cheney] nor Rush Limbaugh are members of the membership committee of the Republican Party," Powell said. "I get to make my decision on that."

    Powell's public retort adds to the often acrimonious conflict between Republican moderates and conservatives that has left some centrists feeling alienated.

    Pennsylvania's Arlen Specter, for example, became a Democrat last month after 28 years as a Republican senator. He cited GOP hostility to his vote in favor of President Obama's economic stimulus package, among other things. Maine's two moderate Republican senators -- Susan Collins and Olympia J. Snowe -- also have expressed public misgivings about the atmosphere in the party.

    Nor was Powell the only Republican moderate to caution the party on Sunday. Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that if the GOP wants "to restore itself, not as a regional party but as a national party, we have to be far less judgmental about disagreements within the party." Ridge, who served as secretary of Homeland Security under George W. Bush, reportedly was passed over as a running mate to GOP presidential nominee John McCain last year because McCain didn't want to alienate conservatives.

    Powell reflected moderates' angst in an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” criticizing "diktats that come down from the right wing of the party."

    Two weeks earlier, Cheney said on "Face the Nation" that Powell had "left the party" when he endorsed Obama for president late last year. "I assumed that that is some indication of his loyalty," Cheney said.

    Limbaugh had begun the drumbeat on his radio show earlier this month.

    "What Colin Powell needs to do is close the loop and become a Democrat, instead of claiming to be a Republican interested in reforming the Republican Party. He's not. He's a full-fledged Democrat," Limbaugh said, according to a partial transcript of a May 6 show on Limbaugh's website.

    On Sunday, Powell targeted Limbaugh for the most severe criticism, accusing the radio host and his followers of using intimidation to stifle competing voices in a necessary debate on the party's future after disastrous electoral losses in 2006 and last year. Limbaugh, he said, "shouldn't have a veto over what someone thinks."

    Powell cited the experience of Republican Party Chairman Michael S. Steele, who in March described Limbaugh as a mere "entertainer" with an "incendiary" radio show. When Limbaugh attacked Steele in response, Steele quickly apologized and hailed him as "a national conservative leader."

    Two Republican congressmen also reversed themselves and apologized to Limbaugh after making similar comments recently, Powell noted.

    Powell, like Steele, used the word "entertainer" to describe Limbaugh and said, "If he's out there, he should be subject to criticism."

    He urged the party to undergo a wide-ranging "after-action review," saying its successive losses demonstrate a "leakage [that] cannot continue if the Republican Party is going to play a major role in the life of our country."

    Powell cited polls showing plummeting numbers of people who identify themselves as Republicans, as well as the party's dwindling competitiveness in most of the country outside the South.

    "The Republican Party has to take a hard look at itself and decide what kind of party are we," Powell said. "Are we simply moving farther to the right and by so doing simply opening up the right of center and the center to be taken over by independents and to be taken over by the Democrats?"

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    whatever, soulless sellout.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    he's like lady macbeth.....trying to wash that blood off now...

    out out damn spot
    It's no longer a dog whistle, it's a fucking trombone


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    Elite Member WhoAmI's Avatar
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    At least he's trying to make up for his past mistakes by standing up to these crazy douchebags. How many more people would Limpdick and Cheney have us kill?

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    a bit late, considering the damage has been done.

    He had 8 fucking years! Sack of shit.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member WhoAmI's Avatar
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    Better late than never.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    It's disingenuous. He's coming out now that it's safe.

    blech. Everything about him just screams coward.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member WhoAmI's Avatar
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    Even so, if he rallies some people behind him who feel safer standing up to the Limppigs because of what he's saying, he's making a positive contribution.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Powell has blood on his hands from supporting the Bush lies. But that doesn't change the fact that he's right about where the Republican Party is heading.

    But you try telling most hardcore conservatives that they're ruining their party and the response is 'we need to just get more conservative, and get rid of the liberal Republicans a.k.a. moderates.'

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    But you try telling most hardcore conservatives that they're ruining their party and the response is 'we need to just get more conservative, and get rid of the liberal Republicans a.k.a. moderates.'
    The hardliners and the tea baggers sound more and more like hippies.

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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    I don't think that everything about Powell screams coward. The guy is a decorated Army general who saw action in Vietnam. And he's virtually the only nominal Republican willing to take on Limbaugh and not backtrack and apologize for his statements.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    yeah, NOW. When it's safe. Again, he had the better part of a decade to fucking say ANYTHING and he didn't.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    yeah, NOW. When it's safe. Again, he had the better part of a decade to fucking say ANYTHING and he didn't.
    Powell has been expressing misgivings about his involvement in promoting the invasion ever since he left the administration in 2005. He admitted publicly (September 2005) that the yellow-cake speech he gave was a "blot on his record".

    He was in the public vanguard of pushing the invasion after resisting it initially. Richard Clarke back's Powell's assertion that Bush wanted to invade Iraq right even before 9/11 but that Powell opposed it. So, Powell was not jumping up and down, or cheerleading every stupid idea that GW Bush had.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    No, just letting himself be used and then publically supporting Dumbya's middle east retard misadventures while whispering "misgivings" in a tiny voice that even Britney Spears's dietician could top while she was cramming herself at the buffet.

    really, a blot on his record? a blot? he sold his SOUL and was partly responsible for the murder of 100,000 people or so along with the rest of them
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member RevellingInSane's Avatar
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    Powell stood by for 8 years and supported the Bush ASSministration. Now the walls are crumbling and he wants to clear his conscience. NO! He kissed the Repub ass to climb the ladder.

    Yes, as Powell says, the GOP is in shambles, but that is what happens when idiots are allowed to run amok. He can not disassociate from the group he assisted and supported.

    Too little, too late. I think is is hilarious the party he sold out too is reminding him he is not the type of face they want representing them.



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