Condoleezza Rice talks to ABC7 at RNC


ABC7 got a chance to speak with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice who warmed up the crowd on Wednesday night with some sharp criticism of the president.

In her speech last night, Rice talked about her parents instilling in her the ambition to do whatever she wanted. She said, "She could be president of the United States if she wanted to be and she becomes the secretary of state."

We asked her if she would ever wanted to be president?

"I don't. I'm not a person who would run for office. I've said it many, many times, it's not in my DNA," said Rice.

She has said it many times, but she's also playing a very prominent role in this week's Republican political convention. Wednesday night she took the stage just before Paul Ryan and took on the Obama administration on what many consider the president's strongest suit -- foreign policy.

"Dictators in Iran and Syria butcher their people and threaten regional security, Russia and China prevent a response, and everyone asks 'Where does America stand?'" said Rice during the speech.

"Well, I wanted to talk about the future, not about the past," said Rice.

In fact, none of the speakers at this convention have wanted to talk about the past in terms of the Iraq war, why the Bush administration pushed to get into it, and the decisions that were made after the troops were sent. In fact, Rice is the highest ranking person from the Bush administration at this convention. Everyone else has stayed away.

"Well I am very grateful that President Bush was willing to make the tough decisions after Sept. 11th that kept us safe," said Rice. Here argument is it could've been much worse. "I thought we were going to be attacked again and so did everyone else."

That doesn't account for the massive anti-war protests in the United States, Europe, and the major allies refusing to join the coalition, but Rice says history will judge the war differently.

"It won't judge what was done by how it looks in 2012. It will judge what was done by how it looks down the road," said Rice.

Down the road is hard to pin down, but in this election year, at this convention, it's not hard to see the Bush administration's foreign policy is nothing anyone on stage bragging about.

"There were many things that we would do differently, but overthrowing Saddam Hussein, I would do it again and again and again," said Raid.

Republican National Convention live coverage
ABC News is providing live coverage of the convention and we'll be streaming it here live from 4 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday.

Weeklong Local ABC7 News coverage
ABC7 News political reporter Mark Matthews will be reporting from Tampa all this week and you can follow along on Twitter at @MatthewsABC7 or on Facebook for instant updates.

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