Flake apologizes for son's 'unacceptable' behavior
June 12th, 2013
06:36 PM ET
1 year ago

Flake apologizes for son's 'unacceptable' behavior

(CNN) – Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona apologized Wednesday for his son's use of racial epithets, homophobic slurs and anti-Semitic remarks in social media.

"I'm very disappointed in my teenage son's words, and I sincerely apologize for the insensitivity," the first-term senator, who was elected last year, said in a statement. "This language is unacceptable, anywhere. Needless to say, I've already spoken with him about this, he has apologized, and I apologize as well."

BuzzFeed reported earlier in the day that Flake's high school-aged son Tanner used the controversial terms on Twitter and as a username for online games.

Tanner has since made his Twitter account private, but BuzzFeed took screen-grabs of some of his controversial tweets.

Flake and his two of his sons, including Tanner, made headlines last week after posting video from their recent survivalist expedition on a deserted island in the Pacific.

– CNN's Ted Barrett and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.


Filed under: Jeff Flake • Senate
soundoff (73 Responses)
  1. jimkon

    Like father like son. Kids repeat what they hear at home.

    June 12, 2013 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  2. GI Joe

    Looks like Flake and his son are living up to their last name.

    Makes you wonder if the kid learned the terms from his daddy, who runs off and leaves the kid with only a mom all week.

    Things that make you go Hmmmmm

    I would never have allowed that to be spoken in my house then it wouldn't be on the social media for everyone to bear witness to We will not forget.

    June 12, 2013 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  3. Dick Smegma

    A Gaper of a lad

    June 12, 2013 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  4. Jeff

    Typical Republican bigotry. Kids who use these likely hear them at home.

    June 12, 2013 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  5. SwingState

    He was just being honest. This is what they really think. I wonder where he got this from. Things that make you go hmmm.

    June 12, 2013 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  6. Mr Dalloway

    I runs in the family I'm sure

    June 12, 2013 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  7. Joe M.

    I don't think he learned it from his dad. He probably reads really old books by racist authors and learned it from there.

    June 13, 2013 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  8. gh

    Apple generally doesn't fall far from the tree.

    June 13, 2013 02:04 am at 2:04 am |
  9. ...

    With a name like Tanner what did he expect?

    June 13, 2013 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  10. Michael Benjamin

    Spoken as a true son of Arizona.

    June 13, 2013 02:46 am at 2:46 am |
  11. NameScott

    Apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    June 13, 2013 03:32 am at 3:32 am |
  12. diabetes is fun

    this is stupid news

    June 13, 2013 05:40 am at 5:40 am |
  13. Tom

    Fruit does not land to far from the tree. First get YOUR OWN house in order Republican Sen. Jeff Flake!

    June 13, 2013 05:41 am at 5:41 am |
  14. clarke

    Children live what they learn and it starts at home!

    June 13, 2013 06:09 am at 6:09 am |
  15. Marie MD

    Oh please flake, the real one. Most kids regurgitate what they hear at home. Are you trying to tell us your child is better than most?
    This is the same case as the mutant from AK and her little homophobic darling, renmember?
    Even the young ones say what they mean then they apologize.

    June 13, 2013 06:18 am at 6:18 am |
  16. Marie MD

    Oh please flake, the real one. Most kids regurgitate what they hear at home. Are you trying to tell us your child is better than most?
    This is the same case as the mutant from AK and her little gay basher darling, remember??
    Even the young ones say what they mean then they apologize.

    June 13, 2013 06:18 am at 6:18 am |
  17. Norman Autrey

    Ahh Arizona! Land of jack wagons, Flakes, and hey, doesn't Sarah Palin live there? If only these idiots would have stayed on the desert island. Next to Texas, Arizona is a constant source of entertainment.

    June 13, 2013 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  18. hmfic

    the apple never falls far from the tree.

    June 13, 2013 06:51 am at 6:51 am |
  19. Andrew

    What do you expect? The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    June 13, 2013 06:53 am at 6:53 am |
  20. Vence

    We all know racism is learned at the end of the table, after dinner.

    June 13, 2013 07:03 am at 7:03 am |
  21. NameLindaHardge

    Flakes son learned it from him. He is only apologizing because his son got caught. I bet those racial words are used everyday by the whole family. After all he is from Arizona.

    June 13, 2013 07:15 am at 7:15 am |
  22. TomInRochNY

    I wonder where he learned it? Things that make you go hhhmmm . . .

    June 13, 2013 07:21 am at 7:21 am |
  23. wwf

    Wow. A Flake and a Frank. The GOP. The party that keeps on taking away, but sure keeps on giving.

    June 13, 2013 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
  24. hiruu

    What exactly is he apologizing over??? For exposing the way he was raised...too late now, as it not possible to recycle this human waste and produce a polite Tanner. The moron kid and his pathetic father are the scum that they are...apologies regardless.

    June 13, 2013 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  25. Tony

    They relate what they here at home from their parents, it was ok before it got to the media, so why the lame apology senator, what your son potray is what you believe in you raise them that way.

    June 13, 2013 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
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