Former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell has endorsed Barack Obama
for president, saying America needs a "transformational figure."
In an interview with NBC news "Meet the Press", Powell said on he is endorsing Obama because of "his ability to inspire" and because of "the inclusive nature" of his campaign.
He said he believes both Obama and his Republican rival, John McCain,
would be good presidents. But Powell said Senator Obama has "met the standard" for being an exceptional president and would lead with a "steady approach."
Powell was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under former President
George H.W. Bush. He was also the first secretary of state under the
current President Bush.
Powell said he was disappointed in the negative tone of Senator
McCain's campaign. He also said McCain's choice for his vice
presidential running-mate, Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin, is not ready
to be president.
In a separate television interview Sunday on "Fox News Sunday",
McCain said he will continue to respect and admire Powell, despite
their difference in opinion. McCain also pointed out that several
former secretaries of state are supporting him as well.
National polls show Obama leading McCain by six percent. But Obama
warned his supporters Saturday not to take winning for granted and
urged them to fight for every vote.
Obama is reported to have raised a record amount of 150 million dollars for his campaign in September.