February 21st, 2014
12:04 PM ET
9 years ago

Nugent apologizes for using term 'subhuman mongrel'

Updated 1:03 p.m.

(CNN) - Conservative activist and rocker Ted Nugent apologized Friday for using the term "subhuman mongrel" to describe President Barack Obama.

"I do apologize–not necessarily to the President–but on behalf of much better men than myself," he said in an interview with conservative radio host Ben Ferguson, who's also a CNN political commentator.

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Texas attorney general Greg Abbott, the likely GOP gubernatorial nominee this year, came under heavy criticism from Democrats this week for campaigning with Nugent, who's known for making outlandish comments about the President.

Watch Ted Nugent on CNN's "Erin Burnett OutFront" Monday night starting at 7 p.m. ET.

Nugent said he apologizes "for using the streetfighter terminology of 'subhuman mongrel' instead of just using more understandable language, such as 'violator of his oath to the Constitution'."

In his apology, Nugent appeared to regret more the fact that his language has been tied to Republican politicians from his state, such as Abbott, Gov. Rick Perry, and Sen. Ted Cruz.

"I apologize for using the term," he said. "I will try to elevate my vernacular to the level of those great men that I'm learning from in the world of politics."

Later on in the interview–after some people on Twitter argued Nugent's comments weren't a real apology–Ferguson asked Nugent if he was directly apologizing to the President for the comments.

"Yes," Nugent replied.

While Perry and Cruz both said they found Nugent's original comment inappropriate, they didn't rule out campaigning with him.

Sen. Rand Paul, however, made headlines when he called on Nugent to apologize Thursday night.

"Ted Nugent's derogatory description of President Obama is offensive and has no place in politics. He should apologize," the Kentucky Republican tweeted.

Asked by CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer Thursday in an interview "The Situation Room" about Nugent, Perry said "The idea that Ted Nugent has said something that's outrageous shouldn't surprise anybody."

Perry, who's considering a second bid for the Republican presidential nomination, added that Nugent "shouldn't have said something like that about the President of the United States."

And Cruz distanced himself with what Nugent said in an exclusive interview Wednesday with CNN Chief Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash.

"Those sentiments there, of course, I don't agree with them. You've never heard me say such a thing and nor would I," Cruz said.

But the GOP senator, who's also entertaining a 2016 run, embraced Nugent's outspoken stance in support of the Second Amendment.

"I will note, there are reasons Ted Nugent - people listen to him, which is that he has been fighting passionately for Second Amendment rights. And - and this administration has demonstrated an incredible hostility to the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens," Cruz said.

Filed under: Greg Abbott • Rand Paul • Rick Perry • Ted Cruz
soundoff (673 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    Not good enough. Die and thereby make the world a better place.

    February 21, 2014 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    "Nugent apologizes for using term 'subhuman mongrel'"

    Nugent non-apologizes for using term 'subhuman mongrel'


    Screw you for giving him credit as though that nonsense was even remotely an apology.

    February 21, 2014 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  3. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Over the years Ted has made many stupid comments. I recall him picking an on air fight with Howard Stern and Howard cleaned his clock for him. I don't think Ted is all that bright and he probably feels insecure. He can play great lead guitar though.

    February 21, 2014 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  4. TONE

    His apologies are a waste of time, and the much better men you are talking about are not better than you, to have you campaign for them. Abbott never condemn your racist rant so how better is he than you.

    February 21, 2014 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  5. karen503

    He's not a "conservative activist and rocker", CNN. He's a draft dodger, pedophile, racist, has-been guitar abuser.

    February 21, 2014 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  6. Tony D

    Jeff Brown in Jersey
    He can play great lead guitar though

    I agree. Whenever "Strangehold" comes on the radio, the speakers get turned WAY up. One of my favorite driving songs.

    February 21, 2014 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    A. He didn't mean it
    B. He believes that he is learning from great pollitician's like Rick Perry et al!!!!
    C. Who cares.

    February 21, 2014 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  8. The Real Tom Paine

    Then his " apology" is worthless. Why does he feel he has the right to attach conditions of any kind to his behavior? So much for his rants about a lack of personal responsibility towards liberals. The man should own up to it and apologize, period.

    February 21, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  9. Tampa Tim

    Type in the search for 20 inflammatory things that republican hero, Ted 'soilem if ya gottem' Nugent. You will then get an idea why he is sought after to campaign with red state candidates.

    February 21, 2014 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  10. Rudy NYC

    "I do apologize–not necessarily to the President–but on behalf of much better men than myself," he said in an interview ...
    That's no apology at all. Not even close.
    He's apologizing to "much better men" [his benefactors] for showing his dark side in public, not for the actual words.

    February 21, 2014 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  11. Joi Gibson

    The non-apology! This guy has no couth – he probably does not even know what that means. President Barack Hussein Obama has more class in his little toe than this person will ever possess. He is disgusting. Guarantee you this non-apology will work for the likes of Cruz and Perry. It is insufficient and not accepted!!!

    February 21, 2014 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  12. Pam from Iowa

    Your apology wasn't needed Ted....no one cares what you say.

    February 21, 2014 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  13. Tampa Tim

    I makes you wonder if his threats and stupidity got him another visit from the FBI.

    February 21, 2014 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  14. iceload

    I think after a period of remarkably stupid comments, it's the listeners fault for listening.

    February 21, 2014 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  15. Tampa Tim

    Ted promised he would be dead or in jail if President Obama was reelected. Ted, you lie!

    February 21, 2014 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  16. sargeantpepper

    Ted Nugent should stop wearing that stupid hat with the wig attached to it.

    February 21, 2014 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  17. yerkiddinright

    Mediocre had been with a non apology. Today's GOP.

    February 21, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  18. smith

    What a sellout..smh. At least Bill Maher and Micheal Moore have the guts to stand behind what they say.

    February 21, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  19. Larry B.

    Too late, Ted.

    February 21, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  20. marty in MA

    Politics brings out the worst in people, especially ignorant people.

    February 21, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  21. MakeThemEatCake

    From what I gathered from this article, he didn't apologize for using the words he did but for saying them out loud.

    February 21, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  22. Wake up People!

    Streetfighter term? That's straight out of the racist's Bible, Birth of a Nation. Please Ted, keep your faux apology.

    February 21, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  23. peterz

    Inside the handsome looking was the hatred?

    February 21, 2014 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  24. AmericansRights

    No need to apologize Nuge, obama calls us worse than that all the time

    February 21, 2014 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  25. BT in TX

    He wasn't know as the "Motor City Madman" because of his IQ! Insanity doesn't go away over time... I have no problem with him campaigning with Texas Republicans. It highlights that they are all bafoons and is helping change the color of this red state. Rock on Ted!

    February 21, 2014 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
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