Election 2014  
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The Corporate Media's Outrageous Double Standard on Romney and Ted Nugent

Mitt Romney's campaign welcomed the endorsement of a washed-up rock-n-roller who said President Obama could "suck on my machine gun." Where's the outrage?

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Nugent called President Obama a criminal and denounced his "vile, evil America-hating administration" which is "wiping its ass with the Constitution." Taking it a step further, he said that "If Barack Obama becomes the president in November, again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year."

"If you can't galvanize and promote and recruit people to vote for Mitt Romney, we're done," he continued.

[...]

Nugent concluded with a call to cut off the heads of Democrats in November: "We need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November. Any questions?"

A Tale of Two Responses

So, following Nugent's latest attempt to incite violence against the president and his political allies, the Romney campaign strongly denounced the rhetoric and rejected Nugent's endorsement, right?

Wrong. Here's what the Romney campaign had to say about Nugent's comments, via campaign spokesperson Andrea Saul:

“Divisive language is offensive no matter what side of the political aisle it comes from. Mitt Romney believes everyone needs to be civil.”

"Divisive language"? How about "calls to violence from a known racist"? Did Saul really mean to implicitly equate Nugent's hatred with Rosen's bungled attempt to say that Ann Romney didn't make a great spokesperson for the average American mother?

And Romney has yet to reject the Nugent endorsement. Instead, the a campaign spokesperson told NBC News that the Romney camp never sought Nugent's nod. But that's not the way Nugent tells it. His March 2 Tweet says he had a long "heart&soul" talk with Romney before he made the endorsement, and he told the Texas Tribune that he exacted a promise from Romney that, if elected president, the Republican would ardently defend the Second Amendment right to bear arms. (Nugent sits on the NRA's board.)

Now, by way of contrast, here's how President Obama responded to Hilary Rosen's comments about Ann Romney:

First of all, there is no tougher job than being a mom. I've watched Michelle, who for most of her career had juggled work and family. but there were times she was on maternity leave and I promise you that's work. That was an ill-advised statement by somebody on television. It's not something I subscribe to. My general rule is, you don't talk about the spouses of elected officials because they've got a really tough job. They're out there supporting their husband or wife who's chosen to serve in the public eye. I think they're off-limits. So on both counts it was the wrong thing to say and I haven't met Mrs. Romney but she seems like a wonderful woman and I know she's devoted her life to her family. [Emphasis added.]

The Secret Service says it is looking into Nugent's calls to violence against the president, although no formal investigation has been launched. Still waiting to hear Romney say that calling for violence against the president of the United States is "off-limits." 

 

Adele M. Stan is AlterNet's Washington correspondent. Follow her on Twitter: www.twitter.com/addiestan

 
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