Retired General Colin Powell, the former United States Secretary of States under then US President George W. Bush, was interviewed on NBC's Meet the Press.
In response to what Powell had said about the Republican Party, comedian and conservative economist Ben Stein briefly spoke out against him. To understand what Stein said in response to Powell, one has to understand what Powell said in the first place.
In regards to the Republican Party, Powell said that the party was intolerant to people
of ethnicity. He said that there was still racism in the GOP. Powell said that the GOP needs to look at itself and see that the United States has changed in terms of demographics. He points out the GOP losses in the 2008 and 2012 US Presidential campaigns. Also, he also criticized the “birther movement.”
Stein, responding to Powell, said that the claim that the GOP was being intolerant was “preposterous
When on CNN, Stein said that the GOP had more African-Americans in the Cabinet at this moment than current US President and Democratic incumbent Barack Obama. Also, he explained that the GOP has been trying to reach out to minorities. Stein addressed that the GOP looked for the racist vote in the past; but, that's changed now. He said that to call the Republican Party as being “intolerant” as being preposterous.
However, Stein wasn't the only one that sounded off against Powell's comments. Conservative radio host Laura Ingraham said that Powell's remarks toward the GOP were absurd
. As Politico reports, Ingraham brought up minority figures in the GOP such as former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, former GOP Rep. Allen West of Florida, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, and so forth.
A Washington Post blog said that there are things being overlooked
. It said that trying to analyze racial attitudes in the GOP is going to be very difficult. The blog says that perhaps Powell knew what he was getting himself into when making such remarks about his own party. So far, it all depends on how Independents, Republicans, and Democrats view black voters.
Also, when speaking on Meet the Press, Powell addressed the gun debate in regards to what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012. He said that he owns firearms; but, he expressed support for legislation on assault weapons restrictions
. Powell gives the suggestion of testing or screening anybody to see if they're responsible enough to buy a weapon. Also, he asked about doing a better job of weapons registration.