News24

Republicans have 'identity problem': Powell

2013-01-14 10:02

Washington — Former Secretary of State Colin Powell says his own Republican Party is having "an identity problem".

The former Joints Chief of Staff chairperson who twice endorsed Democrat Barack Obama for president tells NBC's Meet the Press that in recent years there's been "a significant shift to the right", and that's produced two losing presidential campaigns.

He says the Republicans Party needs to "take a very hard look at itself and understand that the country has changed" demographically, and that if the party doesn't change, "they're going to be in trouble". He also bemoans what he calls "a dark vein of intolerance" in some elements of the party.

He describes himself as a moderate but still a Republican.

Comments
  • Russophillia - 2013-01-14 10:19

    Romney was a moderate Republican too so why did he not endorse him. Simple, Romney isn't black. Like so many people in SA and US when it comes to politics he puts race above competence. I don't understand why is he still calls himself a Republican after endorsing Obama twice. What's in it for him?

      piet.strydom - 2013-01-14 12:34

      Romney moderate? Where were you during the election boet?

  • fidel.uncensored - 2013-01-14 10:29

    Taking up anarchy as your main economic policy is an interesting way of attempting to win US election. Republicans are outright crazy and ignorant bloody fools, e.g. McCain, Bolton, Susan Rice, etc...

  • pierre.devilliers.9231 - 2013-01-14 10:42

    Republicans must surely have an identity crisis, because democrats have become more conservative than traditional mainstream republicans ever were. The problem now for republicans is if they should become more conservative or to become actually more liberal than the democrats. Just an afterthought. America hold itself to the world as the democratic ideal (and I actually admire a lot of what America did and what they stood for). However this example of democracy now gives you exactly two choices of conservatism. Both parties have such a stranglehold in US politics that it is virtually impossible for an alternative third party to make any significant impact. The US has no liberal, green, labour, left or socialist party that can carry enough votes. That translate to no real choice and you basically sit with a quasi dictatorship. I sincerely hope America will find its traditional values again.

      Russophillia - 2013-01-14 11:28

      What do you mean by traditional values? America traditionally has always been a religious, conservative, capitalist two party society since its founding. So neither the democrats nor the republicans are throwing away traditional values as both are, as you say, conservative.

      pierre.devilliers.9231 - 2013-01-15 07:35

      @Russophillia - Yes you right, there are definitely an argument to be made that America traditionally has always been a religious, conservative, capitalist country with a split two party system. However what I see was that a few decades ago the Democrats were more secular, liberal, focussed on human rights, and potentially more excepting to “socialist ideals” of unemployment compensation, free medical service, free education etc. This might just be my perception. Either way, today I look at the two parties and I don’t see much of a difference. The two parties where always dominant, but in the past I perceived them to represent both sides of the spectrum, unlike today.

  • greggail.garnie - 2013-01-14 11:03

    Powell for next PRESIDENT!!!! No colour, just plain sense.

  • Trevor Moller - 2013-01-14 11:12

    Americans in general have an identiy problem

  • allcoveredinNinjas - 2013-01-14 11:49

    The centre of american politics has had a firm move to the left over the last few decades so that the far-left is now left of centre and the right is now far right . The paradigm shift is probably effected by the demographic changes , its followed the European trend and you see former liberal democrats now in the conservative right. The swell of democrats and thin GOP which is the result in shift rather than a party identity shift.

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