Former Secretary of State Colin Powell blames Rush Limbaugh and conservative talk radio for Republican electoral woes in a CNN interview to be broadcast this weekend.
"Can we continue to listen to Rush Limbaugh?" Powell said, according to a transcript of the interview on the “Fareed Zakaria GPS” show CNN released.
"Is this really the kind of party that we want to be when these kinds of spokespersons seem to appeal to our lesser instincts rather than our better instincts?" Powell said.
Powell told Zakaria that he still considers himself a Republican but said his party should quit listening to Limbaugh for advice. Instead, it needs to look more to minority groups if it wants to win elections in the 21st century.
The week before the presidential election, Powell crossed party lines to endorse Barack Obama during an appearance on NBC’s "Meet the Press."
During the appearance, Powell, the first African-American to hold the secretary of state position, made it clear that race had not played a role in his decision to back Obama. His support, he said, arose from Obama's "ability to inspire, because of the inclusive nature of his campaign, because he is reaching out all across America."
Ironically, conservatives like Limbaugh had strongly opposed John McCain during his presidential campaign, while Powell donated $2,300 to McCain during his primary effort.
"I think the party has to stop shouting at the world and at the country," Powell said. "I think that the party has to take a hard look at itself, and I've talked to a number of leaders in recent weeks and they understand that."
"There is nothing wrong with being conservative. There is nothing wrong with having socially conservative views — I don't object to that,” Powell said in the interview, which was taped Wednesday. “But if the party wants to have a future in this country, it has to face some realities. In another 20 years, the majority in this country will be the minority."
The full interview with Powell will air at 1 p.m. ET Sunday on CNN.
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