Retired four-star general and Secretary of State Colin Powell will be voting for former Vice President Joe Biden, saying they are close on social and political issues.
“I will be speaking for him but I don’t plan to make campaign trips,” he told CNN.
Mr. Powell, who served under Republican Presidents George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan, said President Trump “lies” and the people have let him get away with it.
He said there is currently disdain for American foreign policy everywhere in the world and the country needs to get on top of it.
“It seems to all come out of the White House without consultation,” Mr. Powell said. “This is not the way the system is supposed to work.”
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Dr. Ben Carson, who has been an ally of the president since Mr. Trump became the GOP nominee in 2016, refused to criticize Mr. Powell and stayed above the fray.
“I don’t get into demonizing other people. I would much rather talk about policies and solutions,” Mr. Carson told CNN. “He is certainly entitled to his opinion and the way he wants to conduct himself.”
The president, though, did not hold back, taking to Twitter to call Mr. Powell a “stiff.”
“Colin Powell, a real stiff who was very responsible for getting us into the disastrous Middle East Wars, just announced he will be voting for another stiff, Sleepy Joe Biden. Didn’t Powell say that Iraq had “weapons of mass destruction?” They didn’t, but off we went to WAR!” Mr. Trump tweeted.
He then added that Mr. Powell should be reminded of his administration’s achievements.
“Somebody please tell highly overrated Colin Powell that I will have gotten almost 300 Federal Judges approved (a record), Two Great Supreme Court Justices, rebuilt our once depleted Military, Choice for Vets, Biggest Ever Tax & Regulation Cuts, Saved Healthcare & 2A, & much more!” the president also tweeted.
This isn’t the first time Mr. Powell has sided with a Democratic presidential candidate. In 2008, he endorsed Democratic then-Sen. Barack Obama over the GOP nominee, Sen. John McCain, and in 2012, Mr. Powell backed then-President Obama in his reelection bid against Republican Mitt Romney.
In 2008, Mr. Powell criticized the McCain campaign’s “inappropriate” negative tone. Four years later, Mr. Powell questioned Mr. Romney’s foreign-policy stance, calling it a “moving target.”
• Valerie Richardson contributed to this report.
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