Colin Powell Says It Has Become ‘Me The President,’ Instead Of ‘We The People’

Colin Powell testifies during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing in 2004.
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Former Secretary of State Colin Powell does not believe that U.S. President Donald Trump can be a moral leader.

Powell said on Sunday that it has become “me the president” for the chief executive of the United States, instead of “we the people.”

“My favorite three words in our Constitution is the first three words — ‘We the People,'” Powell said during an interview aired on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday. “But recently it’s become ‘Me the President,’ as opposed to ‘We the People.’ And you see things that should not be happening.”

The former U.S. Army general said that Trump should realize that he should stop insulting people, citing that this was the reason he could not vote for Trump in the 2016 election.

Powell, who served in the George W. Bush administration, pointed to Trump’s attacks on the press, which the president has dubbed the enemy of the people. He also pointed Trump’s tendency to insult opponents and different groups of people.

Powell said that Trump insults African-Americans, women, immigrants and fellow candidates for the presidential seat.

Powell also criticized how the United States deals with other nations. He cited that Trump goes to a NATO meeting in Europe, but starts out insulting allies of the United States.

Colin Powell speaks at the International Rescue Committee's Annual Freedom Award in 2011
  Mike Coppola / Getty Images for IRC

Powell said that allies now question why the United States is pulling out of multilateral agreements that it helped forge, including the Iran nuclear deal and the Paris climate accord.

He likewise lamented that the White House lacks foreign police strategy with China, particularly in terms of trade.

Powell also said there is a need for the United States to speak firmly to Russia. Trump has faced criticism after he contradicted U.S. intelligence and sided with Russia over claims of interference in the 2016 presidential election, claiming there is no reason for Russia to meddle in the vote. The interference is believed to have helped Trump in his bid for president.

Later during the interview, Powell commented on how the U.S. treats immigrants. In reference to the former “zero tolerance” immigration policy, Powell said that the world could not believe the United States is doing things like separating mothers and children who were attempting to cross the border.

Nearly 3,000 children have been separated from their parents since April as a result of the Trump administration’s efforts to crack down on illegal immigration and discourage potential border crossings. Although the policy has ended, some 13,000 children are still in U.S. detention centers.