The former Secretary of State and chairman of the joint chiefs of staff -- who gave Obama a critical endorsement in 2008 -- says he's still on board in 2012.
In an interview on CBS This Morning, Powell gave an enthusiastic review of the president's term in office.
"When he took over the country was in very, very difficult straits, we were in one of the worst recessions we had seen in recent times, close to a depression," he said. "And I saw over the next several years stabilization come back in the financial community, housing is now starting to pick up..Consumer confidence is rising. So I think generally we've come out of the dive and we're starting to gain altitude."
Obama's 2008 challenger, Sen. John McCain, ripped the endorsement on FOX News Radio, saying he was disappointed and that Powell has "harmed (his) legacy even further by defending what has clearly been the most feckless foreign policy in my lifetime."
He also credited Obama with ending the war in IRaq and winding down the war in Afghanistan.
The Obama campaign said it had no advance warning of Powell's endorsement and learned about it before Obama's event in Tampa. Obama called Powell to thank him before he took the stage, though there was no discussion of any joint appearances.
Spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the campaign is "very excited" about the endorsement: "We think it sends a strong signal about why he should be sent back for another four years to be commander in chief."