CNN host Wolf Blitzer weighed in on the controversy surrounding Republican Texas gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott's decision to campaign with inflammatory National Rifle Association board member and Outdoor Channel spokesperson Ted Nugent. Blitzer condemned Nugent for calling President Obama a "subhuman mongrel" and predicted that Abbott will be forced to jettison Nugent from his campaign.
Abbott's decision to campaign with Nugent has proved controversial, particularly because of Nugent's history of extreme misogyny and other inflammatory commentary. The Texas Democratic Party, women's group Annie's List, and the campaign of Wendy Davis have all condemned Abbott for his association with Nugent.
During the February 18 edition of Wolf on CNN, Blitzer invited Dallas Morning News reporter Wayne Slater to discuss the ongoing controversy. According to Blitzer, "Nugent's presence hit a sour note with a lot of people. They say Texans deserve better than a candidate who would align himself with someone like Nugent who offered a hate-filled assessment of the president." Blitzer went on to state, "Shockingly, Abbott's campaign brushed aside the criticism, saying they value Nugent's commitment to the Second Amendment."
Slater added, "The problem here is when you call the president a subhuman mongrel, which has not only a disparaging reference but also a historic racial reference in some places, and then when you call feminine women politicians fat pigs, then Abbott has to make a decision. And he had to say do I keep Ted Nugent on the stage with me, or not. He has chosen to do so." Slater also argued that Nugent's absolutist interpretation of the Second Amendment allowed some conservatives to look past his inflammatory rhetoric:
SLATER: It's fascinating, Wolf, because you look at Ted [Nugent] who has long said these outrageous things, calling the president a subhuman mongrel, calling Hillary Clinton the b-word, calling women, feminists fat pigs, saying a whole host of things and you have to ask doesn't he know these are the kinds of words, these are the kinds of phrases that ought to offend people? But his support of the Second Amendment, at least for some Republican base voters is so strong, it trumps all of that, including questions that the Wendy Davis campaign, the likely Democratic opponent of Greg Abbott has raised, in which Nugent has acknowledged sexual relations with underage girls, something that had he ever been charged with a crime would have brought as much as 50 years to a life sentence in Texas.
Blitzer who said he has studied the Holocaust and World War II, also said that the phrase "subhuman mongrel" is similar to the German word "untermensch," which is "what the Nazis called Jews ... to justify the genocide of the Jewish community."
Blitzer concluded the segment by stating, "I suspect [Abbott's campaign is] going to be running away from [Nugent] fairly soon, but we'll see, we'll see what happens."