Perry: Nugent’s ‘subhuman mongrel’ comment wasn’t racist


Rocker Ted Nugent introduces Texas gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott during a stop, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, in Denton, Texas, to promote early voting. Wendy Davis is the Democratic opponent. (AP Photo/The Dallas Morning News, Ron Baselice)

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) says in a new interview that rocker Ted Nugent's recent labeling of President Obama as a "subhuman mongrel" was wrong, but it wasn't racist.

"I don’t think that was a racist," Perry told Bloomberg's Al Hunt, according to a transcript. "I don’t think it was. Matter of fact, I don’t think it was as racist as what President Clinton said to Ted Kennedy trying to get him to help his wife in the ‘08 election when he said, 'You know what, Ted? A few years back this guy was carrying our bags.'"

That Clinton comment was included in a 2012 New Yorker article.

Nugent's comment became an issue when he campaigned recently for Perry's would-be GOP successor as governor, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott.

Nugent has apologized.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.

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Aaron Blake · March 7, 2014