Rocker Ted Nugent on His Recent Obama, Hillary Rant

This is a rush transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," August 29, 2007. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated

JOHN KASICH, GUEST HOST: Thanks for staying with us. I'm John Kasich, in for Bill O'Reilly.

And in the "Unresolved Problem" segment tonight, he's known for pushing the envelope, but at a recent performance at the House of Blues in California, Ted Nugent may have taken it too far.

Here's the video of his profanity-laced rant against two big Democratic presidential contenders.


TED NUGENT, MUSICIAN: I was in Chicago last week. I was in Chicago. I said, "Hey, Obama! You might want to suck on one of these, you punk!" Obama, he's a piece of (expletive deleted), and I told him to suck on my machine gun. Let's hear it for him!

And then I was in New York. I said, "Hey, Hillary! You might want to ride one of these into the sunset, you worthless (expletive deleted).


KASICH: South Dakota officials have reportedly asked the rocker to tone it down at the state fair show there this weekend.

Ted Nugent joins us now on the phone from Waco, Texas. His new CD, "Love Grenade," will be released on September 4.

Hey, Ted, why'd you do this?

NUGENT: John, because rock 'n' roll is too much fun.

And let me just say a happy Labor Day to you.

But trying to explain the intensity of over the top outrageous irreverent rock 'n' roll is like trying to explain an orgasm to a eunuch. If some people don't get it, I am not here to help them through the quagmire.

You realize that when Mick Jagger rode a 40-foot inflated phallic symbol onto stage, he didn't explain anything to anyone. That was not political commentary. It was over the top, intense, hysterically funny rock and roll. And anybody who doesn't get it, drive safely.

KASICH: Well, Ted, I know rock 'n' roll. You know that I know rock 'n' roll. But frankly, I mean, that was, like, such a crude thing. You know, like some kind of fourth grade stuff, like you know, these things you said were — they just weren't right.

I mean, why — did you ever think these people — what about Obama's kid hearing that? What do we tell him? "Well, it's just rock 'n' roll?”

NELSON: I don't know. What do you tell the children of soldiers who have sacrificed their lives when Obama claims that their daddies are raiding innocent civilians over there?

Come on, John. Let's get our priorities straight. With all due respect, unless you've been to a Ted Nugent concert lately, you don't know the intensity.

By the way, we're selling out every concert on this "Love Grenade" tour. And I do exactly what the good Marine Corps taught me every night. And I do PG-13 concerts for the state fairs and the county fairs and all these different family events that I've been selling out. Because I want to make sure I do the right thing.

An outrageous, over the top rock 'n' roll event like the House of Blues, John, as long as no laws are broken and no one gets hurt. Nothing is sacred.

KASICH: Well, no, I understand you say you have free speech. But you do say you want to run for office. Now how would you like your family — I guess I'm sensitive about it, Ted, because see, I've been the target of this kind of stuff. Not from the — well, sometimes from the right, but mostly from the left.

NUGENT: John, what kind of stuff? What do you mean, target of humor?

KASICH: Personal attacks. I mean, this is a personal attack, what you did on these people. This was not like, you know, Obama is out there and, you know — I mean, look, I just went into it and attacked John Edwards. I try to do it, however, on the basis of the policy, on the issues.

Because what's happening, Ted, in our culture today is that politics is being ruined because people are being polarized because of the personal attacks and innuendoes being labeled at people.

And I know you love your country. I'm just telling you, this kind of stuff contributes to it. Don't you think it does?

NUGENT: John, you know, I really respect your take. You do a great job whenever you stand up for things you believe in. They're the same things that the Nugent family and all good conscientious American families believe in.

But to try to make a comment in a meaningful and sincere way from the rock 'n' roll stage is really apples and grenades. When I want to make a personal comment about Obama or Hillary or anyone else, I will do so in an environment such as this where I will articulate the issues, you know, lick for lick. I'm not going to rant on the O'Reilly show, but on the rock 'n' roll stage, I'm going to be...

KASICH: These weren't issues. I mean, you were telling Obama to suck on your machine gun. And Hillary to ride, you know — come on. I mean...

NUGENT: By the way, you know, I mean, John, Alice Cooper didn't really cut off his head with the guillotine on stage. And Sam Kinison really didn't believe in sex with a Volkswagen Beetle.

We're talking about stage outrage. And once again, God love you, John, but some people don't — you know, just this week, John, since this has aired — by the way, I've been saying this on stage for about eight years now. Do you know that again this week, I was invited by a family who has a terminally ill daughter who want me to take her hunting?

And you know, if a family with the terminally ill daughter thinks I'm OK — because you understand the outrage, and I don't need anyone else's stamp of approval.

KASICH: I'm not trying to — I'm not getting into questioning what kind of a guy you are here. I'm saying...

NUGENT: Everybody else is.

KASICH: What I'm saying is this should be out of bounds, because you do love your country. You do want us to address some of the serious problems in this country.

I've got to tell you, Ted, none of it can happen when we're spending all of our time viciously attacking people on either side. And it's happening all of the time. So why don't you just take that part out and have more fun doing other things?

NUGENT: Well, you know, it's coincidental, John. I take your advice to heart. I've been giving that advice to everyone from my brother and others, as well, who by the way, avoid rock 'n' roll concerts because they think my guitar is too damn loud.

KASICH: No, I don't think that. I know — you know, I know some of the stuff that you did. I know who Ted Nugent is.

I'm just saying Ted, when you're there for the music, why not play the music? Why not be wry? Why not do things that are fun? But, you know, let's not tell that — look, we are too many enemies in politics. You know it. We spend our time trying to figure or how to destroy people. We don't destroy the candidate, we go after their wives, their spouses. We go after their kids. You need to be a leader in this.

NUGENT: Well, you know, I would be more than happy to have a legitimate and sincere, well-researched dialogue with Hillary, Obama, anyone in a real environment of honesty and integrity.

On stage, it doesn't qualify. On the rock 'n' roll stage — and again, John, you can — many others seem to be resisting what literally tens of millions of people in America.

Come to and you'll see that the response to this "Love Grenade" tour, with this hyperbious, over-the-top, outrageous, irreverent humor, is celebrated with cheers and laughter every night.

Coincidentally, John, as I finish up my "Love Grenade" tour in the next week, the next five shows that we wrap up the tour happen to be PG-13.

KASICH: OK, there you go.

NUGENT: That's coincidental, but I will take your advice to heart.

KASICH: You think about it. You think about it.

NUGENT: I'm always thinking.

KASICH: All right, Ted. Hey, listen, good luck on the rest of the tour. I'm sure they're going to join you out in South Dakota. Thanks for coming out tonight.

NUGENT: And happy Labor Day.

KASICH: All right. Thank you.

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