Secret Service clears Nugent after interview
April 19th, 2012
04:58 PM ET
3 years ago

Secret Service clears Nugent after interview

(CNN) - The U.S. Secret Service said Thursday that it has resolved any questions regarding rocker Ted Nugent, whom its agents interviewed after he said he would be "dead or in jail" if President Barack Obama were re-elected.

"The issue has been resolved," and the agency "does not anticipate any further action," Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary told CNN after the interview.

Earlier Thursday, Nugent issued a statement of his own, writing, "I met with two fine, professional Secret Service agents in OK today." The musician was in Ardmore, Oklahoma, to perform a concert.

Nugent described the as a "good, solid, professional meeting concluding that I have never made any threats of violence towards anyone. The meeting could not have gone better. I thanked them for their service, we shook hands and went about our business. God bless the good federal agents wherever they may be."

The interview came amid outcry over comments Nugent made at the annual meeting of the National Rifle Association, which took place in St. Louis, Missouri, this past weekend.

"If Barack Obama becomes the president in November again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year," Nugent said, according to a video that the NRA posted on YouTube. "If you can't go home and get everybody in your lives to clean house in this vile, evil, America-hating administration, I don't even know what you're made out of."

The video has since been removed.

Many have questioned whether Nugent was alluding to violence against the president.

U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, solicited donations from supporters using the comments, calling them "despicable, deplorable and completely beyond the pale."

A U.S. official said Wednesday that Secret Service policy is to acknowledge every American's right to free speech while still determining an individual's intent.

Nugent's comments sparked particular furor because the musician and activist has endorsed GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul responded to comments from Nugent on Tuesday, saying "divisive language is offensive no matter what side of the political aisle it comes from."

"Mitt Romney believes everyone needs to be civil," she added.

CNN's Jason Morris, Jessica Yellin, Javi Morgado and Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.


Filed under: Oklahoma • President Obama
soundoff (170 Responses)
  1. LibsRHypocrites

    Wasserman Shultz is the epitome of a HYPOCRITE!!

    April 19, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  2. If he only had a brain

    Did anyone really expect him to tell the SS that he WAS planning on killing the president, or encouraging others to do so? If he had... well...he would have been a pretty stupid assasin. Many criminals have taunted and then when confronted, denied ever taunting. His statemets just shows he is a butt kissing loser.

    April 19, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. Investment Advisor

    @ GOP=Greed Over People... That is your interpretation? Really??? Sounds like a pure left-wing conspiracy to me. I'm horse laughing!

    April 19, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  4. Mike

    Levon Helm died today. Too bad it wasn't Nugent instead.

    April 19, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  5. allens

    nugent is one of the most unamerican citizens i have ever seen. i took great pleasure in tossing my nugent cd's yesterday. this is not free speach, this is treason. he nothing more than a big mouth has been and a coward to boot. oh gee, that is not what i meant! this is a stain on an already sad elections. regardless of whos side you are on. this needs to stop, it gets worse ea election cycle

    April 19, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  6. dreamer96

    How do you know they were the real Secret Service Agents..So they showed you a badge...but have you ever seen one from the Secret Service before Mr. Nugent?...Maybe you just got Punked ..and the video with all your personal questions and answers will come out soon....on You Tube...

    April 19, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  7. ohreally

    Investment adviser, you are ridiculous. Everyone knows what he was implying. It's nice to know you support a draft dodger. One who brags about being with underage girls. And Romney welcomed his endorsement. Nice work Mittens.

    April 19, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  8. Troy in Austin

    @me138 – You know he did, don't lie to yourself.

    April 19, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  9. Emperor Vadik, CA

    What a coward...

    ...ohhh I never meant anything bad...

    ..wussy...

    ...reminiscent of his draft dodging days...

    April 19, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  10. Richard Miller

    He is a CHICKEN HAWK with a very big mouth and nothing else.

    April 19, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  11. John in SC

    He's still a tool. His music sucks, and who really cares what this hick has to say?

    April 19, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  12. rad4d

    And yet again, Nugent gets the last laugh...

    April 19, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  13. WW

    Jesus would change his name if he saw today's "Christians".

    April 19, 2012 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  14. JSH

    Either way Ted is fine with me...I for one think you and other winger conservative nuts would do your country good if you decided to play a game of tag with your guns. We don't need you, never did and btw your music sucks!

    April 19, 2012 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  15. royhobbs

    The guy is not even a has-been; in terms of talent, he's a never-was. He's got to do something to attract attention and he succeeded. What a nothing. Romney needs to disassociate himself from this anti-American clown-now.

    April 19, 2012 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  16. Eric

    "If Barack Obama becomes the president in November again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year," Nugent said

    Sounds to me like he is saying (considering where he is speaking, the NRA !!!) that if Obama gets elected, either he will be dead because he won't be able to defend himself with a gun legally since it will be outlawed or he will be in jail because he successfully uses a weapon at home to defend himself and is arrested. Duh

    April 19, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  17. Zyxlor

    Okay. If that wasn't an implied threat then explain to me what he meant. Why would he be dead on in jail? Is he going to get really drunk and race around in his pickup?
    Come on me138 or Investment Advisor, explain it to me.

    April 19, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  18. Another POV

    Has anyone stopped to think that perhaps Ted Nugent was referring to the state of volatility in which our country sits when he made those comments?

    Saying he would either be dead or in jail, in Ted Nugent-speak, means he believes his rights are being stripped away one by one. He was saying he believes that if he continued to speak his mind in the way he has for decades, the current administration would see fit to somehow silence him for being outspoken.

    To have the SS (hmm...ironic abbreviation isn't it?) coming down and talking to him, Nugent's words were nearly spot-on. He could have ended up in jail for speaking his mind.

    April 19, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  19. MCommenter

    What a loser. Big talker, loudmouth... Most of the people in the crowd weren't jumping out of their seats. A few nods and cheers, but mostly I think even those people were sitting in silence. I'm just trying to be fair here. This guy seems like a really happy guy - blaming the federal government for all his problems (and not being able to live a happy life). What a joke... they seem to forget this federal government did a lot of stuff over the years, and he picks and chooses what he'll celebrate (war) and everything else is an annoyance. Sorry buddy, you can't have your cake and eat it too. Sure things can be better, but to call hardworking people on the opposite (?) political spectrum criminals, etc.. well shows how deep you are.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  20. steve

    The secret service agents more than likely agreed with Nugent's views about his philosophy.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  21. Patrick

    What Ted said was over most Demo- Craps heads . Maybe he should have spoken in simpler English you cry babies can figure out what the real message Is .

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  22. fatherheathen

    Nugent is an irrelevant hick and a talentless hack.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  23. Guitar

    Why anyone would listen to this cowardly draft dodging, criminal pedophile, (look them both up), with no sense of what is truly meant to be an American is beyond the pale! On the lowest rung of society! Time for relic Ted to head out to pasture.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  24. Franky

    The right is simply nuts. I mean the lefts anger goes about as far as "code pink". Radical rightism needs to be removed from our political world.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  25. GI Joe

    Incitement is punishable too. In spite of the fact that Robmey's son's idolize this guy, it's just wrong to incite.

    April 19, 2012 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
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