Video: Did Powell not stand up for Hagel?

posted at 8:01 am on January 14, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

It’s not unusual to see a conservative publication and the mainstream media look at the same event and come away with different conclusions.  After Colin Powell went on Meet the Press yesterday, the Washington Post headline read, “Colin Powell: Chuck Hagel ‘superbly qualified’ to be defense secretary [sic]“.  The Weekly Standard and the Daily Caller came away with a much different impression, however.  “Powell Won’t Stand Up for Hagel on Israel,” read the former, while the latter took a more specific approach with “Powell refuses to defend Hagel on Israeli-Palestinian ‘moral equivalency’”.  Wow, I thought when I first read these headlines, Powell must have really thrown Hagel to the wolves.

Er … not exactly.  While David Gregory asked Powell some tough questions about Hagel’s voting and rhetoric record, Powell offered quite a robust defense for Hagel on Israel, as the clip from the Weekly Standard makes pretty clear:

The Daily Caller’s take was more accurate, but still missed the mark:

“There is a sense among his critics that [Hagel] views this [conflict] in an evenhanded way, that they equally share the blame … Is that his view?” asked David Gregory, the host of NBC’s “Meet The Press.”

“Well, I’ll let — you know, he should be able to give his views which he will do at the confirmation hearing,” Powell said, failing to robustly declare that Hagel does not see Israelis and Palestinians as equally blameworthy.

“I don’t believe that these moral equivalency between the two sides … [and] you will have to ask him what he believes,” added Powell, who has positioned himself as a moderate GOP supporter of Obama.

While it’s true that Powell didn’t explicitly declare that Hagel doesn’t believe in a moral equivalency between the two sides, Powell made it clear that he doesn’t believe it, and strongly implied that he doesn’t think Hagel believes it, either.  Whether that’s true or not is another matter, but as I’ve written in the past, that’s not the real problem with Hagel’s nomination anyway.  The real problem is Hagel’s record on Iran, which includes opposition to both sanctions and a military option to stop Tehran from getting nuclear weapons, and what it says about Barack Obama’s attitude toward Iran in a second term.

Perhaps the impulse to see a bus toss in these remarks has to do with Powell’s accusation about “a dark vein of intolerance” in the Republican Party:

“There is also a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party,” he continued. “They still sort of look down on minorities. How can I evidence that? When I see [Palin] saying that the president is ‘shucking and jiving,’ that’s a racial-era slave term. When I see [Sununu] after the president’s first debate, where he didn’t do very well, says that the president was ‘lazy’ — he didn’t say he was slow, he was tired, he didn’t do well — he said he was lazy. Now, it may not mean anything to most Americans, but to those of use who are African Americans, the second word is ‘shiftless’ and there’s a third word that goes along with it.”

Powell went on to slam Republicans for “the whole birther movement.”

“Why do senior Republican leaders tolerate this kind of discussion within the party?” he wondered. “I think the party has to take a look at itself. It has to take a look at it’s responsibilities for health care, it has to take a look at immigration, it has to take a look at those less fortunate than us.”

Well, I’m not aware of any Republican Party support for birthers at any level. In fact, every party leader of which I’m aware has put as much distance between that small clique and the GOP as they possibly could. I’m not sure what Powell means by “tolerate this kind of discussion within the party,” because at least in my experience, they don’t.  The “code words” accusation is another topic, and while many will chafe at the criticism and claim it unfair, it still might be a valuable bit of input into how the GOP comes across to minority voters at times.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Why should anyone give a damn about anything said by this super overrated liberal who lies and says that he is a Republican?

mnjg on January 14, 2013 at 8:14 AM

The “code words” accusation is another topic, and while many will chafe at the criticism and claim it unfair, it still might be a valuable bit of input into how the GOP comes across to minority voters at times.

So it’s now unacceptable to call Obama lazy? Despite all the vacations and White House parties? Even though he jetted off to a Vegas fundraiser the morning after the Benghazi attack? Regardless of how little he’s engaged in negotiations on Capitol Hill?

What would be the preferred term? Uninterested? Distracted? Preoccupied?

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 8:16 AM

You can thank the lsm for portraying the gop in a bad light …..take folks words out of context and they believe it lock stock and barrel

cmsinaz on January 14, 2013 at 8:17 AM

Well, I’m not aware of any Republican Party support for birthers at any level. In fact, every party leader of which I’m aware has put as much distance between that small clique and the GOP as they possibly could.

I know that, Ed. But Mr. Romney’s continued appearances with Donald Trump, plus silent embrace of him as endorser and surrogate was particularly irksome.

Ladysmith CulchaVulcha on January 14, 2013 at 8:22 AM

“There is also a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party,” he continued.

Funny, I don’t hear Conservatives using the term ‘house you-know-what’ and ‘Uncle Tom’. But liberals do quite often, usually in reference to Allen West and especially against Clarence Thomas. I bet more than once against Powell, too, when he served under a Republican president.

Powell can stuff it. It would be nice if he finally came clean and switched parties. I also wonder how Powell liked sitting across from a man who would be facing criminal prosecution except that the District of Columbia DA, his buddy, gave him a pass though admitting David Gregory clearly broke the law.

Liam on January 14, 2013 at 8:25 AM

Colin Powell is about as much as Republican as Donald Trump is a humble, thoughtful, pleasant-to-be-around businessman.

pilamaye on January 14, 2013 at 8:26 AM

Well, I’m not aware of any Republican Party support for birthers at any level.

This is fact but the MSM made sure to push this on the GOP,hard.

docflash on January 14, 2013 at 8:26 AM

If Powell were on fire, I wouldn’t cross the street to piss on his head.

How’s that for Darkside, General Powell?

WordsMatter on January 14, 2013 at 8:27 AM

You can thank the lsm for portraying the gop in a bad light …..take folks words out of context and they believe it lock stock and barrel

cmsinaz on January 14, 2013 at 8:17 AM

There’s a solution for that. It’s called fighting back. Why the GOP continues to allow the drive-bys to frame the narrative when they go on these shows is beyond me. Every single member of the Republican Party in Congress and all the right-wing pundits need to be sat down and forced to watch Sununu’s appearances with Soledud during the campaign. That’s how you handle biased, unprofessional hacks masquerading as journalists.

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 8:28 AM

Powell, Noonan, Frum, Brooks, Medved… nothing like waking up to true conservative voices on HA.

Say, when was the last Levin thread? Beck? Palin? Oh right – the reason they don’t get attention here is because they’re in their own little corner of the world, not on MSM channels.

Wouldn’t it be great if actual conservative commentary had a voice in the MSM? We need an alternative that is as accessible as the MSM. We don’t have one. And no, Fox is not it.

beatcanvas on January 14, 2013 at 8:30 AM

, it still might be a valuable bit of input into how the GOP comes across to minority voters at times.

Or, conversely, it might be a valuable bit of input into what prism minority voters have been induced to interpret everything through.
Including a couple of former Secretaries of State, who should know better.

Cleombrotus on January 14, 2013 at 8:30 AM

Like Haley Barbour said, “He sees things through his own prism.”

Cleombrotus on January 14, 2013 at 8:31 AM

who gives a rats patootie about hagel.

colon went out of his way to disparage a former female vice-presidential candidate.
i thought she was history? shows you how much the bush clan hates Sarah, to send out one of their flunkies.

renalin on January 14, 2013 at 8:32 AM

who gives a rats patootie about hagel.

colon went out of his way to disparage a former female vice-presidential candidate.
i thought she was history? shows you how much the bush clan hates Sarah, to send out one of their flunkies.

renalin on January 14, 2013 at 8:32 AM

Palin definitely ain’t out of the minds of some folks. See the Golden Globes last night as further evidence.

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 8:33 AM

Doughboy it goes thru one ear and out the other for gop talking heads

They rather play nice nice towards the lsm

cmsinaz on January 14, 2013 at 8:36 AM

Just spitballing here…… I wonder what would happen if the republicans just decided to decline all talk shows and interviews with these hacks.

I know, impossible, but it would be interesting to see how the MSM would spin something from nothing.

Trouble is, these megalomaniacs love the sound of their own voices.

tru2tx on January 14, 2013 at 8:45 AM

There was no dark vein of intolerance when he was nominated by a GOP president and supported by the GOP for SOS. There was also no dark vein of intolerance awhile back when the GOP was begging him to run for president, twice I might add. This fool bores me.

HerneTheHunter on January 14, 2013 at 8:46 AM

Bottom line for me. Colin Powell was elevated by the GOP to Secretary of State. He did a crappy job. In fact, he stayed silent and let a US Special Prosecutor spend two years and two million dollars on a witch hunt that nailed Scooter Libby.

In short, Powell had an opportunity to be a leader within the GOP and he remained an ineffective backbencher. He has since proven that he is no Republican. He can STFU.

Happy Nomad on January 14, 2013 at 8:46 AM

tru2tx on January 14, 2013 at 8:45 AM

Wouldn’t that be a sight.

HerneTheHunter on January 14, 2013 at 8:48 AM

Doughboy it goes thru one ear and out the other for gop talking heads

They rather play nice nice towards the lsm

cmsinaz on January 14, 2013 at 8:36 AM

I’ll never understand why. I heard Sour Kraut on FoxNews last week talking about how a lot of Republicans in Congress seem to finally be figuring out after 4 years that Obama isn’t your garden variety liberal Democrat, has zero desire to cut any spending whatsoever, and therefore can’t be negotiated with in good faith, unlike Clinton in the 90′s. Whereas we peon masses all had him pegged back in 2009.

They seem to be on an even slower learning curve when it comes to the media. Have they figured out nothing since 2008? It’s not even about bias or double standards. Everyone’s known about that for a long time. It’s about the level of corruption and coordination with Democrat Party operatives that has infested the modern day so-called mainstream media. If the burial of the Benghazi and Fast & Furious scandals(not to mention the perpetual free pass afforded to Obama during his Presidency) isn’t enough to wake these Republicans up to this obvious truth, I don’t know what will be.

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 8:48 AM

Just spitballing here…… I wonder what would happen if the republicans just decided to decline all talk shows and interviews with these hacks.

I know, impossible, but it would be interesting to see how the MSM would spin something from nothing.

tru2tx on January 14, 2013 at 8:45 AM

Why would it be impossible? I think the real GOP (not “Republicans” like Powell or Hagel) should engage in a boycott of all these shows where the hosts are clearly out with a left-wing agenda. Wayne LePierre would have been prosecuted by DC for brining in that illegal magazine. David Gregory was not. Candy Crowley openly tag-teamed the rat-eared wonder in attacking Mitt Romney when she “moderated” the second Presidential debate. And MSNBC…… enough said.

These Sunday talk shows are archaic in the first place. Just providing fodder for Monday morning headlines. I say the GOP should just take a pass on showing up on any of these shows and let the left figure out how they are going to fill the air time.

Happy Nomad on January 14, 2013 at 8:50 AM

Well, I’m not aware of any Republican Party support for birthers at any level. In fact, every party leader of which I’m aware has put as much distance between that small clique and the GOP as they possibly could.

Ah ah ah!! Thanks for the laughs! Yeah, Mitt Romney “put as much distance” as he possibly could between himself and Chief Birther Donald Trump… while doing fundraisers with him :)

Durandal on January 14, 2013 at 8:53 AM

Doughboy *sigh*

cmsinaz on January 14, 2013 at 8:56 AM

These Sunday talk shows are archaic in the first place. Just providing fodder for Monday morning headlines. I say the GOP should just take a pass on showing up on any of these shows and let the left figure out how they are going to fill the air time.

Happy Nomad on January 14, 2013 at 8:50 AM

+1000

Liam on January 14, 2013 at 9:00 AM

Ah ah ah!! Thanks for the laughs! Yeah, Mitt Romney “put as much distance” as he possibly could between himself and Chief Birther Donald Trump… while doing fundraisers with him :)

Durandal on January 14, 2013 at 8:53 AM

Trump isn’t exactly a birther but, of course, friends of the rat-eared wonder are experts in lying their asses off to fit a narrative. Hence Mitt Romney caused a woman to die of cancer and was actively seeking to ban all abortions. In short, there isn’t a level playing field and I’ve come to expect dishonest and zero integrity from you folks. It is a hallmark of the parasite class.

And let’s not forget the unsavory lot of anti-American people that are in the rat-eared wonder’s inner circle including Valarie Jarrett, Jerimiah Wright, and the terrorist Bill Ayers.

Happy Nomad on January 14, 2013 at 9:02 AM

you will have to ask him what he believes,” added Powell, who has positioned himself as a moderate GOP supporter of Obama

…ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!…do they serve food at the club he is appearing at?…or just drinks?

KOOLAID2 on January 14, 2013 at 9:32 AM

Ed, I don’t think it is still fair to dismiss “birthers” as some sort of fringe nuts. SCOTUS is taking up the “birther” case in 4 weeks.

I still think it is a bit far-fetched that a con that big could go on for so long with so much at stake but evidently the questions merit a full review by the supreme court. You may want to research the case so you don’t get caught flat footed on Feb 15th like the rest of the media will probably be.

Mord on January 14, 2013 at 9:34 AM

added Powell, who has positioned himself as a moderate GOP supporter of Obama.

I guess this is my dark vein showing through. Powell is a preening black guy supporting another black guy. Period.

BuckeyeSam on January 14, 2013 at 9:38 AM

So it’s now unacceptable to call Obama lazy?

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 8:16 AM

Apparently, yes, even though he himself told Barbara Walters that “there’s a laziness” in him.

Good Lord, I’m sick of this dog-whistle, PC nonsense. It’s come to the point where you can’t even criticize a minority without being called racist. I would’ve thought that Powell was smarter than that. But apparently not.

Syzygy on January 14, 2013 at 9:42 AM

Good Lord, I’m sick of this dog-whistle, PC nonsense. It’s come to the point where you can’t even criticize a minority without being called racist. I would’ve thought that Powell was smarter than that. But apparently not.

Syzygy on January 14, 2013 at 9:42 AM

Not true. It’s perfectly acceptable to criticize a minority….provided they’re a conservative and/or Republican.

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 9:57 AM

Not true. It’s perfectly acceptable to criticize a minority….provided they’re a conservative and/or Republican.

Doughboy on January 14, 2013 at 9:57 AM

But when they turn traitor like Colin Powell, they go from oreo to stalwart Republican in the blink of an eye. Though not Pelosi’s eye since she doesn’t blink.

Happy Nomad on January 14, 2013 at 10:26 AM

General Powell is without a clue.

He has given up is leadership and his sacred honor in exchange for a few crumbs of media time.

Take his $h_t Happens defense of Hillary Clinton. He elected not to ignore basics. It’s the coverup and explanation that is the crime.

Is it that he has become such a bottom feeder that the MisTwiLies (Misleading, Twists and Lies) Run & Hide CYA is the norm in his life?

I find him guilty of MisTwiLies as charged and sentenced to insignificance for the remainder of his natural life.

jpcpt03 on January 14, 2013 at 10:44 AM

This intolerance crap is really getting old. Now you’re a racist for calling Obama lazy? Give me a break. Here’s the problem with race baiters like the MSM and Colin Powell and his entire Democratic Party. While they whine about the “intolerant streak” in the GOP, they seem to be quick to dismiss the idea of an intolerant streak in their own party, even after racially insensitive remarks made by the likes of Harry Reid, Bob Kerrey, Geraldine Ferraro, Chris Dodd, and Joe Biden, just to name a few. For pete’s sake, Chris Dodd did the same thing to Senator Byrd that Trent Lott did to Senator Thurmond…heaped praises on him in honor of an achievement. One goes on an apology tour and STILL loses his chance at Senate majority leader, while the other gets a slap on the wrist.

ncconservative on January 14, 2013 at 12:23 PM

Can’t get past the “brotha” thing.

StevC on January 14, 2013 at 1:41 PM

The problem with many African Americans, including Powell, is that they take criticism as racism such as: “shucking and jiving”, “lazy”… If the criticism is true it can’t be racism!

philrat on January 14, 2013 at 5:11 PM