Bush has new mandate but Powell looks like a lame duck
Colin Powell has been evasive about his future, skirting questions about the timing of his widely expected departure.
Secretary of State Colin Powell has been evasive about his future, skirting questions about the timing of his widely expected departure after four rough-and-tumble years as America's chief diplomat.
In dozens of interviews, Powell has dismissed questions about his plans by saying with a smile, "I serve at the pleasure of the president."
Powell has long been considered to be a one-term secretary of state, irrespective of whether President George W. Bush was re-elected.
Speculation has been rife for months about possible successors in a second Bush term.
Among those mentioned are national security adviser Condoleezza Rice and UN ambassador John Danforth. Last July, Bush suggested during an appearance in Philadelphia that he would be happy if Powell were to remain on.