She may be the highest ranking African-American in the Republican administration of President Bush, but when it comes to who will get her vote for president in November, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice won't say publicly that she's backing Sen. John McCain.
When asked Sunday by Wolf Blitzer on CNN's “Late Edition” if she had "decided who to vote for,” Rice replied, “Wolf, yes.”
But when Blitzer asked if she wanted to reveal her choice, Rice said, “No.”
Rice's response came in the context of praise she offered of Sen. Barack Obama and his successful nomination quest.
She described his achievement -- the first African-American to be a major party nominee -- as “great for our country.”
“I do think it says that we've come a long way,” she said.
Blitzer also showed a clip of Rice's predecessor, Colin Powell, who congratulated Obama for knocking down barriers for African-Americans.
Rice said: “It's interesting that it's from Colin Powell. He knocked down a few barriers of his own. He knocked down the barrier of chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He knocked down the barrier to the first black secretary of state."
She then added: “Yes, I've knocked down a few, too. It just shows that our country has been doing this for a while, and it's great that this last barrier perhaps has also come down.”
She discounted reports that she wants to be vice president, saying: “I tell everybody who will listen … look, I’ve done my part and I’ve got six months to sprint to the finish and then I have other things that I want to do.”
Among those things, she said, are "issues that have come to concern me greatly -- some that I was concerned about before I came here, like the state of education in the United States, which I think is at the root of our competitiveness. It's at the root of our confidence, and therefore it's at the root of our international leadership.”
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