by Jack Minor –
A local leader with the tea party has taken issue with statements made by former Gen. Colin Powell saying the Tea Party was to blame for the divisiveness in Washington, while omitting any similar criticism of leftist groups.
In an interview with ABC’s Christiane Amanpour, Powell was asked about the “poisonous” tone in the country that was preventing Congress from passing legislation such as Obama’s jobs bill.
Amanpour took issue with members of the tea party referencing the founding fathers and the Constitution. “The Tea Party, which quotes left and right the Founding Fathers, they say compromise is a dirty word, and they try to point to the Founding Fathers and the Constitution.”
Powell said the tea party was wrong for standing on constitutional principles and that they needed to compromise. “The Tea Party point of view of no compromise whatsoever is not a point of view that will eventually produce a presidential candidate who will win,” Powell said. “Compromise is how this country was founded, and unless two people in disagreement with each other don’t find a way to reach out to one another and make compromises, you don’t get a consensus that allows you to move forward.”
Powell also appeared to criticize the media for drawing attention to specifics of what is being proposed in legislation and should instead let them simply do their work in private. “So what we have to do is sort of take some of the heat out of our political life in terms of the coverage of it, so these folks can get to work quietly.”
During the interview, the Occupy Wall Street movement with its uncompromising demands including the forgiveness of all debt and a guaranteed living wage of $20 an hour for all regardless of employment was never mentioned.
Brian Britton, head of the Greeley 9/12 Project said it was shocking that Powell, who took an oath to defend the Constitution, would take issue with people who wanted their leaders to follow it.
“For General Powell to say that individual citizens who respect the Constitution and believe that our government should live by its principles are the problem in this country for not compromising is a betrayal of his oath to support and defend the Constitution,” Britton said. “So basically, what Powell appears to be saying is its ok to violate the Constitution sometimes in order to compromise and get things done.”