Discuss as:

Powell clarifies: 'I don't hire illegal immigrants'

Retired Gen. Colin Powell is clarifying a statement he made on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday, when he said that illegal immigrants are “doing the things we need done in this country” and that some of them are laborers who are “all over my house.”

“We have millions and millions of illegal immigrants in our country, undocumented individuals, who are working, who are doing things we need done in this country,” he told NBC’s David Gregory on Sunday. "They're all over my house, doing things, making repairs. I’m sure you've seen them at your house.

In a statement posted on the NBC show's website, Powell underscored that he does not hire undocumented workers, merely that there are likely such contractors who work in his neighborhood.

“I don't hire illegal immigrants," he said in the clarifying statement. "On Meet the Press yesterday, I referred to illegal immigrants working around my house. I was referring to the many service contractors who work in my neighborhood, using mostly immigrant workers, who do good work. Some may well be "illegal."

“There are 11 million illegal immigrants in this country and most are working somewhere in our economy.”

Here’s the original video from Meet the Press:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy