June 13th, 2008
05:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Fmr. senator finds son's decision not to endorse Obama ‘puzzling'

Rep. Boren said earlier this week he will not be formally endorsing Obama.

Rep. Boren said earlier this week he will not be formally endorsing Obama.

(CNN) - This year’s presidential campaign has been one pitting family members against one another.

Now, former Oklahoma Sen. David Boren is on opposite sides of his son, Oklahoma Rep. Dan Boren, who announced earlier this week that he will not endorse Barack Obama for president. The younger Boren's reasoning is that his district is very conservative and he doesn’t agree with many of the Democratic nominee's positions.

Listen to Sen. Boren's comments to Roland Martin

The elder Boren, now president of the University of Oklahoma and a staunch supporter of Obama, said Friday on my radio program "The Roland S. Martin Show on WVON-AM in Chicago" that he’s “puzzled by his son’s announcement.

"We’ve grown up in a family where we were taught to think for ourselves, but I have to say I’m puzzled about how much thinking he put into that before he said it," Boren said. "I think he’ll probably be saying some other things."

“He did say he was going to vote for Barack Obama. He just made the puzzling statement he wasn’t gong to endorse him. Well, when you say publicly you’re voting for somebody I think that means you’re supporting them.”

The father later added: “We all learn from things and my hope is will be a learning experience for him because, as I say, this isn’t a matter of politics, this is a matter of the future of our country.”

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (269 Responses)
  1. today

    I understand his feelings,i was democrat to but now for Mccain.

    June 13, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  2. George

    "his district is very conservative", explains why. He has allowed his narrow self-interest to override the national interest. Such people do not get far in politics! He is finished!

    June 13, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  3. Grover Syck

    juniors actons would be grounds to disinherit him.

    On the "mid west sends a message" You complain about him being too young, what about Kennedy, he was about the same age, and was one of the best presidents we have had.

    I agree with former Oklahoma Sen. David Boren, this is about the future of our country. If McCain wins, we have no future.

    June 13, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  4. Taa Taa

    To Indiana Bob and all of you airheads who commented about him not voting for Senator Obama, it's very obvious you did not read the context of the story.. Boren said he IS going to vote for Obama, he's simply not going to endorse him for fear of losing his seat. You air heads. Read the context next time..

    June 13, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  5. texsara

    I can't vote for Obama.
    However, I am a Boren and an American and a life-long Democrat and whatever Dan thinks he has to do is ok...I understand. My daddy's family were from OK. They are wonderful people. Salt of the earth as they say. Boren's are beautiful. I'm so proud of him for winning his seat in congress.

    June 13, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  6. JAZZ

    It's called ambivalence. It's the self described "blank creen" thing. You're just not sure who he is and what change he will be bringing.
    The thrill is gone. Reality is setting in....

    June 13, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  7. Vlad

    Are americans really that stupid???? I'm faberglasted by all the code for "black" those "mccain democrats" are using it's sickening. The inepexrienced guy beated the most "vetted" brand in american politics with a revolutionary model of campaign management and you still doubt his hability. What else does he need to do to prove is worth? Turn white? I mean all he does is talk but Mccain can't even do that right. He thinks Putin is president of Germany. One thing for sure you haven't learned anything from the shorsightedness of that previous administration. But "eh" as a Canadian i can keep enjoying the parity of our dollar with yours that Cheney's & Bush great management exeperience has bought your country.

    June 13, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  8. JAZZ

    Correction: ... It's the self described "blank screen" thing.

    June 13, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |

    I can somewhat sympathise with the younger Boren..

    Barack Obama is without a doubt an easier candidate to vote for than Mc Cane. However, as I think Boren does; I too will have to hold my nose and vote for Oama.

    He has two major Faults fo rme:

    1.) He is Too Liberal on Gays. This goes against my Religious beliefs. You cannot disobey God in the name of Liberal Thinking.
    Being homosexual is against God, period; end of discussion and shall forever be against God. There is nothing we can ever say or legislate to change God's Supreme Rule and order.
    Obama claims to be a Christian, but he must not be a True Christian. He questions God.
    God has already spoken on this. And you are either with God or against God. There is no Liberal Zone in Gods Kingdom and there Certainly is no second guessing allowed. No matter how unfair or harsh it may seem, we must accept Gods rules or ultimately pay the consequence. All I can tell you is that NO Homosexual will ever receive eternal life.

    2.) Too Liberal on Immigration. This Goes against my Patriotism and
    a deep respect for Veterans. What did they Die for if Our Borders and American Citizenship are not kept Sacred.?
    To give someone a "special pathway" to acheive what our Veterans died defending is to desecrate their souls and graves.
    If Our Citizenship is worthless or cheap; why did so many give their life or limbs to protect and defend America..?

    Reward Invaders on our Prescious and Sacred ground ,,,just because they've been here desecrating our slain and disabled Veterans? Or because they are now here and its convienient to let them stay?

    And if you ever lost a family member or had a family lose an arm, leg, an eye, etc.. you know exactly why I say NEVER..!!!

    We will Deport every Illegal If it Takes 100 years or More.!

    June 13, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  10. stoltz61

    The former senator from Oklahoma and the Governor of Oklahoma are nothing but bitter politicians. Both are looking for jobs if Obama gets elected. They are voting for Obama for their own self-serving reasons. The people of Oklahoma are not too happy with the two.

    June 13, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  11. Taa Taa

    Jim, you did not read it.. He is voting for OBAMA...

    June 13, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  12. annie

    Why would anyone support an inexperience, unqualified, selected candidate of the dnc who cannot even show respect to the flag, who gave the bird to his opponent, who is going to raise our taxes thru the roof, who thinks 18 mil Americans are bitter, Bible thumping, gun totin', uneducated idiots, WHY would anyone support him?

    June 13, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  13. sharp

    I live in Boren's district and he has just lost my vote. Noticed one of the comments saying the democrats have had the senate for the last 2 years and the economy has tanked, just wonder if they think that just happened over night, could have been the GOP blowing the big bucks when they were in charge, don't you think?

    June 13, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  14. Craig of Salisbury

    At least Rep. Boren has the presence of mind and the political fortitude to speak in polite and respectful terms about what motivates him regarding the level of support he will give to the democratic candidate. It simply may not be politically wise to declare openly that he endorses Sen. Obama, so instead, he tones down the rhetoric by saying simply that he will vote for him.

    On a different note, Sen. Obama may be perceived as lacking experience; that he is an"empty suit"; that he is ultra liberal and a socialist; that he doesn't understand the basic tenets of capitalism–however, I contend, with very good reason, using each of the aforementioned complaints as evidence, that what you are really saying is wrong with Sen. Obama is that he believes differently than each of you do. I have no objection to that. In fact, I am very pleased that Sen. Obama DOES believe differently. This is precisely what will lead to his election (selection by the people!) as our next president.

    I am one of millions of citizens that look forward to saying: President Obama.

    June 13, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  15. Tommy Hussein in St. Louis

    I really couldn't care less what David Boren thinks. Here is Missouri, Reps. Carnahan and Clay, and Sen. McCaskill, don't seem to have this problem even though they represent a pretty conservative state as well. In any case, I don't think Obama particularly needs his endorsement, since he is from a state that McCain will likely win anyway. Other than saying that, I don't think there is any need to badmouth him, and I'm optimistic that most of Obama's detractors will realize they were wrong about him in the future. Call me Pollyanna.

    Since I didn't get a chance to respond in the other article about McCain saying the candidates wives should be respected, I just want to say I agree. I'm perfectly happy leaving Cindy McCain and Michelle Obama out of this. Whatever their bad habits and character flaws may be, I doubt that it would have any bearing on their husbands' ability to be an effective president. I think we should be fair to them as well as the candidates themselves, keeping in mind that it is very difficult and stressful to live your life in a fish bowl, and they will make mistakes sometimes.

    June 13, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  16. nesto 13627

    It is very unfortunate, that some people say they belong to the democratic party for so many years but are now planning to vote the other side come November. What is the problem? Why do some people blame the press and others for a victory which Obama earned and deserved? He worked hard and his campaign did everything for the victory. Those wolves in sheep clothing had better leave the party now before it is too late. True democrats know and respect democratic principles and these people will give their true votes to our party`s nominee Barack Obama.

    Long our DNC.

    June 13, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. Phil, FL

    Maybe he "mis-spoke".

    June 13, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  18. FEDUP

    All Obama knows how to do is run for office. He has really never served. Every office was merely a springboard to the next.

    June 13, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |

    WHY would a decision like this be "puzzling"?
    He does not like Senator Obama and what he stands for, is that not his right?
    What is WRONG with the DNC? They say that they represent the people, they say they stand buy the people... They don't. They stand for their own selfish gain... I was a Democrat my whole life (now after the Michigan mess an Independent) and was lied to all the time...

    His decision is NOT PUZZLING at all...

    June 13, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  20. mmhmm

    Obama's Policies are not "like" Hillary's – they ARE Hillary's! He has done nothing to get where he is – absurd adulation and reverse racism at its finest. Vivienne – The reason he is called liberal is because of HOW he voted on various measures – you know – for those few times where he actually chose a side rather than voting "present". I am with Indiana Bob – I didn't leave the DNC either – it left me. I think it is highly likely that Obama will win this election – but it certainly won't be with my vote. (I know – I know – you Obama fanatics don't need us...). And stop ripping Boren for sying he will vote for Obama but not endorse him – isn't that what you people keep trying to shove down our throats? Vote for Obama or you aren't a Democrat? – Well, he is voting for his party – I will vote in the best interests of this country. McCain 08

    June 13, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |

    I am just too happy that Obama has no experience!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    He does not have the experience that led us to the war that we went in without calculating the consiquences.

    He does not have the experience that brought our econmy to shambles.

    He does not have the experience that has made us the laughing stock of the world.

    He dose not have the experience that has made the dollar a mere colored paper around the world.

    He does not have the experience that has made other world leaders shun America.

    He does not have the experience that sold our country to lobbyists.

    Yes President Obama, you don't have these experiences and that is why we desperately need you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  22. Barry

    To The Mid West Sends a Message

    No he'll just run off with your wallet and spend the money on Iraq, Afanganistan and a war with Iran.

    Plus he'll spend on all his rich friends.

    Get real.

    June 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  23. Bill Jay

    What is the big deal, he can support anyone he wants to.
    All you cry babies for Obama, stop it already.

    June 13, 2008 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  24. Omar

    INDIANA BOB ur just down right RACIST...and im sure ur probably proud for being so, cause u gave no goo reason ur switching to republicans...... you know whats the most unfortunate thing for u is and a reality.... a black man gonna incharge of ur country...and ur just a minority!....racists are monority

    June 13, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  25. The

    Barack Obama = little or no experience

    I am one of the tens of millions of citizens that look forward to saying
    Senator Obama

    June 13, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
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