Spirit of the Wild: Lawmaker explains bringing Nugent to State of the Union
February 12th, 2013
01:53 PM ET
10 years ago

Spirit of the Wild: Lawmaker explains bringing Nugent to State of the Union

Washington (CNN) – Rep. Steve Stockman, the Texas Republican who invited Ted Nugent to this year's State of the Union, explained Tuesday his reasoning in bringing along the outspoken rocker and gun rights advocate to President Barack Obama's annual address.

"He's a very articulate spokesman," Stockman told CNN. "I'm excited to have him. I think he gives a balance to what's being said tonight at the White House. And it will be a balance. The president gives his views and his opinions. And we live in a free country where other people get to speak their opinion."

Watch CNN's comprehensive coverage of President Barack Obama's State of the Union address starting Tuesday night at 7 p.m. ET on CNN TV and follow online at CNN.com or via CNN's apps for iPhone, iPad and Android. Follow our real-time State of the Union live blog at cnn.com/conversation.

Stockman, who served two years in the U.S. House during the 1990s and was again elected last year, has emerged as a vocal critic of Obama, particularly on the subject of gun control. He's vowed to tweet during the president's address using the hashtag #youlie, a reference to the 2009 outburst from Rep. Joe Wilson, R-South Carolina, during Obama's address on health care to a joint session of Congress.

Stockman has also said he'll consider filing impeachment articles against the president in response to the executive directives Obama issued following December's deadly school shooting in Connecticut.

"I think if we keep going down this road it sets a dangerous precedent and we're going to continue to look at our options," Stockman said Tuesday, adding that "all options are on the table."

His guest to Tuesday's speech, the platinum-selling rocker Ted Nugent, has also voiced his fierce opposition to Obama's policies, including during last year's presidential campaign. He was interviewed by the U.S. Secret Service after he said he would be "dead or in jail" if Obama was re-elected.

Nugent made the comments at the annual meeting of the National Rifle Association, on whose board he sits.

In a recent interview with CNN's Deborah Feyerick, Nugent said tighter restrictions on guns wouldn't prevent massacres like the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

"It's not the weapons. The weapons had nothing to do with it. These weapons are in every pickup in Texas. People have to get past the hardware," Nugent said.

One place there won't be weapons? The U.S. Capitol during the president's speech. Asked if he was confident Nugent would arrive unarmed, Stockman recalled his guest saying he would have to "demilitarize" himself.

"He has to go through screening like we all do," he said.

CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.

soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. Don

    Rep. Steve Stockman or Ted Nugent would make a better president than the one we have now.

    February 12, 2013 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    He's vowed to tweet during the president's address using the hashtag #youlie, a reference to the 2009 outburst from Rep. Joe Wilson, R-South Carolina.....
    What's the difference between shouting it out and tweeting it out? Not much that I can see. Members of Congress should at least show a little respect for their own office. It's like their taking the dignity and honor of serving in the Congress down several notches to that of AM radio host.

    February 12, 2013 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  3. Joi Gibson

    WOW, just WOW! I have no words to describe my disgust for both these people.

    February 12, 2013 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  4. Mashed Potato Bulletin

    "Articulate"?? The Nuge!?


    Well we know the tea party holds its representation to low standards... at least they're consistent.

    February 12, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  5. yane

    totally out of order

    February 12, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  6. Laverne

    If a democratic congressman had invited such a disrespectful person who basically threatened the president, we would never hear the end of it, as a matter of fact the dems have more class and respect than to do such a thing. I guess they have discussed him being another "Joe Wilson" and if he does I hope they haul his ass right out of the chambers. Hateful intentions are always exposed.!

    February 12, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  7. Gail

    Rep. Steve Stockman and Ted Nugent are great. My only regret is that I don't live in Rep. Steve Stockman's district. Would love to be able to vote for him.

    February 12, 2013 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  8. Lynda/Minnesota

    "He's a very articulate spokesman," Stockman told CNN."

    Oh, dear. I thought America was heading into into the "kinder, gentler" GOTP talking point phase. My mistake.

    February 12, 2013 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  9. Mikey

    Nugent is a mediocre guitar player with a couple of good songs, who makes up for talent with volume. As far as his political views, he's borderline insane – just another angry, fearful white guy who's paranoia outweighs his reason.

    February 12, 2013 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  10. Charles

    Just when I thought that republicans could not get any dumber.

    February 12, 2013 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  11. Jim

    A lot of words describe Ted Nugent, but articulate is not one of them.

    February 12, 2013 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  12. Bill from GA

    If the State of the Union Address is turning into a Circus, you need a wild animal or 2 (nugent).

    I"m not thrilled with the dems' use of 'gun-violence victims' for their version of show-and-tell, either. This address needs to be short & serious, without all the hoopla from the peanut gallery (audience).

    February 12, 2013 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  13. anagram_kid

    From the article – Rep. Stockman said, “These weapons are in every pickup in Texas.” This is where the journalist needed to step up and ask him if he could prove that. I am so tired of this type of exaggeration passing as a acceptable answer. I really wish journalists would start calling people out on these statements that are either lies, hyperbole or just wrong.

    February 12, 2013 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  14. Terry

    A one term loser invites another loser. Story at 6. Stockman is the absolute worst kind of legislator.

    February 12, 2013 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  15. Dan5404

    Only the GOP of today could pick a has-been singer whose career is over the hill as a representative guest just because he's a hate-filled redneck with a mouth louder than most. I thought that's why they're using their token Hispanic, Marco Rubio to pretend they are actually changing to a more moderate platform. The platform has not changed, only the fake rhetoric. When they understand that it's their policies, not their speeches that are unacceptable to most Americans and modify them to a more bipartisan stance will they have a chance at taking power in the long run.

    February 12, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  16. jkane sfl the gop national disgrace party will be swept out like the trash they are in2014 ?

    Nugent is just another braindead teaparty loser who has no future because nobodys will buy his hick redneck ltrash noise he tries to pass off as music!!!!!

    February 12, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  17. Thomas

    I would love to see Ted give the GOP response to the State of the Union. That would be something to watch.

    February 12, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  18. proud canadian

    Yet we all wonder what is wrong with America! Lagging behind most developed countries in almost all economic indicators.Problem #1 GOP

    February 12, 2013 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  19. Larry L

    Ted "Crappy-Pants" Nugent admits to literally defecating in his pants to avoid the draft. He had a chance to serve and chose defecation over dedication. Now he's a chicken-hawk who openly threatened the President. Great choice to represent the GOP.

    February 12, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  20. The Real Tom Paine

    Articulate? Nugent, the person who penned " Wango Tango"? Nice to see that men who commit statutory rape and father kids out of wedlock are held in such high esteem in conservative circles.

    February 12, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  21. The Real Tom Paine

    Demilitarize? This coming from the draft dodger who like to play at being a soldier? Nice.

    February 12, 2013 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  22. GOP Fails Arithmetic & Integrity Tests All The Time

    Inviting someone with the views of Nuggent is an affront to the President and beneath the office of US Congressman. When the adults in the Republicans Party realize this and have the courage to discipline members who lack even the basics of common sense & decorum, the GOP will have a chance at redemption.

    The Presidency [and the man/woman holding the office] command respect. Neither Huggent nor his Republican sponsor reflect that. Americans of every race/creed/color/gender are watching the GOP to see a leader emerge that beats back the unprincipled haters. We can`t respect the Party until then.

    February 12, 2013 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    someone should shoot stockman and nugent with their own guns.no respect for anything,they don't deserve to live

    February 12, 2013 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    Oh whatever. It's use of the guests as a statement just like both sides always do for the SOTU. What matters is the statement they intend to make. In this case, it's "yeah, sure, he said if you were re-elected he'd either be dead or in jail and he's chickened out on both those promises, which btw got him a nice interview from the Secret Service, so we hope the whole affair makes his presence at the SOTU extremely insulting to the office of the POTUS while you're holding it President Darky." It's meant as an insult. Nothing more. Nothing less.

    February 12, 2013 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  25. Richard Miller

    If Nugent is an articulate speaker then Hitler was saint! The guy belongs in prison or better yet dead like he offered earlier.

    February 12, 2013 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
1 2 3