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. UNcommon Sense

    Its really sad when the people around you are stuck in 1776.

    February 21, 2014 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  2. Carol

    I love it! Keep blustering Nugent and calling yourself a friend to Cruz and Perry. It is great for the Democrats. He really is dummer than dirt and ickier as well! Hey Cruz and Perry....see any problems for you here?

    February 21, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  3. Sir To You

    Another draft dodging chicken hawk trying to look tough.

    February 21, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  4. greg

    You mean there are men greater than Ted Nugent? I'm shocked.

    February 21, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  5. Jim

    While I appreciate Ted's support of the 2nd amendment, I do wish he'd learn to keep his mouth shut the rest of the time. Making outlandish and frequently offensive comments doesn't do anything to bolster intellectual credibility. Not that I'd expect intellectual credibility from a rock star, but once you get involved in politics, expectations change.

    February 21, 2014 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  6. CryBabies

    Ted on the right...Al on the left.

    February 21, 2014 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  7. Winning

    As a gun owner, I feel that Ted Nugent is a complete embarrassment to gun owners. He does not speak for all of us by any means. He is sort of the Al Sharpton of 2nd amendment issues.

    February 21, 2014 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  8. Robert

    Let him talk! He shows us all what he and his Repugnant chums are all about. Sarah, Ted N. and Ted C. are all terrific examples of what kind of lunacy you get with GOP. They have their guns and their big mouths. Not much on ideas or solutions, but highly entertaining.

    February 21, 2014 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  9. peterz

    Hatred was not protected by the Second Amendment rights but under watch for violation of human rights.

    February 21, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  10. Brian

    Nugent is the same buffoon he has always been. Amazes me how Republicans will cling to any wacko out there.

    February 21, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  11. gkam

    Nugent is a coward. While the rest of us Americans were fighting the Commies, he POOPED his pants and wore it for days to dodge the draft.

    Now, he likes to shoot arrows through the bodies of helpless animals, and pretends to be a real person.

    His character is typical of conservatives.

    February 21, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  12. DrDanno

    We should make this guy the poster child of the GOP. He so aptly represents their values and intellect.

    February 21, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  13. jaintn

    What a coward. What a stinking coward, just like I always thought. He's not even man enough to stand up for the vile, disgusting filth that spews forth from the gaping maw about his 1980's soul patch. I can't believe how much I actively hate the guy. I would LOVE to swing my 20 pound purse at his empty head.

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  14. Peter

    Ted should have apologized for crawling back out from under his rock.

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  15. ShawnDH

    A racist draft-dodging coward and noted pedophile - Republican hero!

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  16. Mark

    Dont apologize for speaking like a man and degrading politicians.Tthey are all mongrels, lairs and thieves.

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  17. Todd Nolan

    Typical non-apology apology. First, he excludes President Obama, though inadvertently re-including him by directing it to "much better men than [himself]." Then he apologizes only for his "language" and "vernacular," suggesting his underlying ideas are okay. On the contrary, the substance and ideas are the problem, not the diction . Cloaking racism and hatred in code words doesn't really improve them much. When Tea Party people and their associates show their true colors, which they do constantly, we should believe them.

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  18. Rawker

    Ted Nugent for President!

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  19. TEDnugentISaFOOL

    Conservatives ... you can't kill them legally, YET.

    February 21, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  20. C Gunn

    Steve Miller, are you kidding? In what world is calling out stupidity, incompetence, war-mongering and arrogance in any way comparable to referring to any person of color, much less the President of the United States, as a "subhuman mongrel"?

    February 21, 2014 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  21. Markus B

    I cannot believe anyone cares what a draft dodging chickenhawk has to say about anything. When the US called, Ted went down to his draft board and-literally-crapped in his pants to keep from serving his country. There's your second amendment hero, Republicans.

    February 21, 2014 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  22. Flagship, NC

    He really, really makes republicans look bad.
    We can add him to the list.

    February 21, 2014 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  23. rickcor2014

    So fun to watch the GOP imploding on itself. It's almost like if they don't want to ever get back to the White House. I guess we just have to say, "thank you" for making it so much easier to win the next presidential election.

    February 21, 2014 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  24. Michael SC

    at least he is not poaching when he hits the campaign trail. What a dumb-ass coward

    February 21, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  25. DMR

    There is no acceptable excuse for the comments of Mr. Nugent in relation to the President. You can dislike the President, and that is your right. However, there is never an excuse for disrespecting the office, which is what he did. There is little question that what Ted Nugent wanted was attention, and he got it. That is pretty much Nugent's total track record as a person, whatever it takes to get attention no matter how revolting.

    February 21, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
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