November 4th, 2008
05:40 PM ET
14 years ago

PUMA founder: Obama is Democrats' Bush

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="PUMA members still won't vote for Obama."]

(CNN) - When Will Bower, an ardent Hillary Clinton supporter and lifelong Democrat, founded PUMA, Party Unity My A**, his mission was to express frustration in the Democratic Party. Fast forward six months to Election Day, and he is proud to say he's cast his ballot for the candidate he "trusts" most: John McCain.

"I see Barack Obama as essentially being the Democratic George Bush," Bower said. "It's a reactionary movement. People like John McCain and Hillary Clinton represent mores stability and sensibility to me."

Bower started the PUMA movement in the days leading up to the suspension of Clinton's presidential campaign in early June.

The initiative was not to rally support for McCain but to unite those who don't want Obama as president.

The group is predominantly composed of female Clinton supporters, Bower told CNN in early June, but he has also helped launch the Just Say No Deal, a nationwide coalition that he estimated has 2 million voters who are also vowing to "say no" to the Illinois senator.

The 36-year-old Washington resident has never voted for a Republican in his 18 years of qualifying to vote but said he feels that Obama does not represent the voice of the Democratic Party but the "leadership" of the Democratic National Committee.

"I didn't want to validate corruption or reward the campaign for what I thought was a fraudulent victory," Bower said. "What I am left with is a matter of trust. I have very little trust for Barack Obama. Even though John McCain and I might have differences on various issues, I trust him.

"[McCain is] a bipartisan leader, and I think that's the kind of leadership we need right now," Bower added.

Only during Clinton's convention speech in Denver, Colorado, did Bower consider not voting for McCain, but at no point was he swayed toward Obama.

He credits the Arizona senator's choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate in helping to decide his vote.

"I think [Sarah Palin] is essentially as qualified as Barack Obama," Bower said. "The benefit of Palin is that she is only second on the ticket, as opposed to first. I feel that Barack Obama is no more qualified than Sarah Palin."

As for the other members of PUMA, Bower says the majority will be casting votes for McCain, just as he did.

"There are plenty of PUMAs who are still not ready to go the extra step [and vote McCain], but they are not ready to vote for Obama, either."

Those voters, he says, will either abstain from voting, vote third-party or write in Clinton's name.

Only a small percentage of members have shifted toward supporting Obama, but if those members pull the lever for the Democratic nominee, they are "no longer a PUMA," Bower said.

soundoff (370 Responses)
  1. chucky1169469

    This guy needs to seek help to get over it.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  2. Anand

    Such a shallow, narrow-minded person. Anyone who votes based on colour and not based on issues is terribly crippled. Shame on Will Bower!!

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  3. James

    These people are sick anyway i wouldnt bother with anything they say.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  4. Trey

    PUMA? Sounds pretty stupid. Why is this guy a story on CNN? He's a nobody who actually credits the choice of Palin as his reason for voting for McCain?????? This guys is an idiot.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  5. I have another name.


    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  6. Ken

    Bower is a sore sport

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  7. David

    Unfortunately, he is a sore loser. The primary was won fairly by Obama and those who supported him. A vote for McCain is in no what a supporter of Hillary should be doing.

    McCain is not trustworthy-it is Bower's anger that his candidate lost that blinds him to just how power hungry and egotistical McCain is in his drive for the presidency.

    Obama has his faults for sure but so do Hillary and John McCain.

    Bower forgets that 18 million people also cast ballots for Obama. Voting is a numbers game and unfortunately, Hillary lost due to the numbers.

    These types of groups again sabotage the voting process and should be stopped and charged with an appropriate offense.

    PUMA's shout quit their tantrums and get behind the proper candidate who best represents the Democrat Party and its supporters and that person is Barack Obama.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  8. Jay

    Will's not a Democrat, he's an urban redneck.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  9. MBuvia Greenwood,IN

    As a woman who voted for Hillary in the Primary in Indiana i voted for Obama today. Obama has the same values as Hillary . Why anyone who voted for Hillary would not vote for Obama means that they did not hold the same values as Hillary. McCain does not have Hillary's values -in fact just the opposite. After the last 8 years we need to think what is good for the country and McCain -Palin doesn't compute. You would vote for Palin after Clinton-Are you crazy???

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  10. Matt

    PUMA's support Hillary. Hillary says support Barack. PUMA's must now support Bower? Sounds like an El Paso cult. Bower will next start a religion. He is just wacky emough...

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  11. former Clinton Supporter - voted for Obama

    This guy is a JOKE!!

    If someone has any bit of common sense, they would NOT make the transition from Clinton to McCain. Why? Well, Obama and Clinton have VERY similar positions. Clearly these idiots don't really care about where the candidate stands on the issues....or else they would never make this switch.

    Obama – the next prez

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  12. Proud to be American

    I thought PUMA folks tucked their tail between their legs and went away... gee still around hun? well go vote for McCain and be quiet the Democrates are united without you are your support! go sit on it!!!!

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  13. MGP

    Wait, McCain is the stable leader and Obama is George Bush? What kind of wacko land are we in?

    Who voted 90% of the time with Bush?

    Who suspended his campaign before he didn't?

    Who said the fundamentals of the economy are strong one day and then said the economy is in crisis the next?

    Who has shown intellectual curiosity and has succeeded in everything he's done whereas Bush has failed in everything he's done?

    And on and on and on.

    PUMA's. What a joke. LOL.

    November 4, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  14. hgh

    oh, cnn, why do you give a forum to such lunatics? These so called PUMAs do not understand the meaning of winning something fair and square. Obama won the primary, fair and square.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  15. nadenna colbert

    I think this might be the most ignortant statement I have heard laterly. Shall we compare. Bush has never had an orginal idea, or but a plan into action. Oh the war that was a great example Barack has plans/ideas for all major issues facing this nation and beyond. Bush wanted to follow in daddys footsteps yet could never fill the shoes and used the last 8 yrs with a daddy complex that caused our nation grief, suffering and turmoil. Barack is no way like him at all

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  16. antoine

    Stay on the losing team. you are a disgruntled Hillary supporter Afraid of change. , but bless you anyway.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  17. Dom

    How sad.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  18. Concerned Voter

    Who cares what this nobody thinks?!

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  19. Hahaha

    Ridiculous. Entirely. McCain stands against everything that Hillary stands for and Obama won because the people voted for him. But I digress. I wonder if there any other motivations this person is not revealing.

    I can't stop laughing.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  20. charlie

    If we lose this election. i am holding you and your pathetic litle misguided group of malcontents responsible. If we lose you will be seeing a lot of me around your area Will. You will be hearing a lot from me too. You are a pathetic excuse for a political thinker. How on earth did Barack streal the nomination? How does voting for Mccain help you if you agree with Hillary Clinton? Did you not take political Science 101? Or are you just a racist little troglodyte. methinks a little from both columns. You are a louisy person and a vindictive loser. Enjoy your wasted vote. Idiot.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  21. mike

    Yes Patricia, my thoughts exactly. Sour loser. So sore that he is willing to cut of his nose to spite his face.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  22. Ben

    I walked into the ballot box to vote. It hit me. I just didn't feel comfortable voting for Obama. He is who I was planning to vote for, but I just couldn't. I just don't feel like I can really trust him. Something just isn't right.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  23. MIke

    If McSame wins, it will be PUMAs fault. Pure and simple.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  24. Alex

    Who cares about PUMA?
    The name of the party proves the culture within.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  25. Clare Wiggs

    Seriously – is he kidding me? How can you be Democratic one minute then a Republican the next? I
    He should really get a life and find something constructive to do with his time.

    November 4, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
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