Powell not ready to endorse Obama for re-election

CREATED May. 22, 2012

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- Former Secretary of State Colin Powell is declining to renew the endorsement he gave Barack Obama four years ago, when he called Obama "a transformational figure."

Pressed in a network interview to say whether he's backing Obama, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff demurred Tuesday.

Powell tells NBC's "Today" show, quote, "I always keep my powder dry, as they say in the military." He credits Obama with stabilizing the financial system and "fixing the auto industry" but says he should have spent more time on the economy.

Powell calls Mitt Romney a viable candidate and says he's "still listening" to Republican proposals. Powell, who served under President George W. Bush, also says  "I don't want to throw my weight behind someone" at this point in the campaign.