On MSNBC’s Morning Joe yesterday, former Secretary of State Colin Powell says that the Republican Party needs to be more inclusive when it comes to voting at the polls. He criticized the GOP’s push for stricter voter ID laws which he says, tend to target minorities.
“Should we really have gone after reducing the turnout of voters in those places where we thought it would make a difference?” he asked. “The Republican Party should be a party that says, ‘We want everybody to vote,’ and make it easier for people to vote and give them a reason to vote for the party, and not to find ways to keep them from voting at all.”
Powell, who has twice endorsed President Barack Obama, mentioned in the Morning Joe interview that the Republican Party attempted to reduce voter turnout in the 2012 Presidential election.
Seventeen states, the majority of them with Republican-controlled state legislatures, have instituted photo ID requirements at voting polls, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Democrats have argued that these voter ID laws may prevent certain groups from voting such as poor, older and minority voters.
Powell’s comments come shortly after saying the GOP had “dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party” to NBC’s Meet the Press. He further explains that this “intolerance” refers to how Republicans “look down on minorities.”
Follow Brittany Tom on Twitter @brittanyrtom