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Varmint hunting on the campaign trail

Musician and gun rights activist Ted Nugent addresses a seminar at the National Rifle Association’s 2011 convention in Pittsburgh. Nugent met Thursday with the Secret Service to explain his remarks last weekend about President Barack Obama.

Associated Press

Musician and gun rights activist Ted Nugent addresses a seminar at the National Rifle Association’s 2011 convention in Pittsburgh. Nugent met Thursday with the Secret Service to explain his remarks last weekend about President Barack Obama.

Well this much is pretty clear. Mitt Romney appears to have successfully locked up that pivotal D-list, has-been, aging rock 'n' roller vote.

Now that Ted Nugent has become Romney's senior moment adviser from the Planet Paranoia 7, the campaign is on to wooing Milli Vanilli, the surviving Monkees, Bobby Brown and a Kardashian to be named later.

Isn't a presidential campaign about dignity, always dignity?

In what appears to be a craven bid to be named ambassador to the Larry Flynt mansion, Nugent surmised the other day that if President Barack Obama is re-elected, by this time next year Nugent would be either "dead or in jail."

Some observers speculated that the Gen. Curtis LeMay of the NRA had just issued a not too thinly veiled threat against the president of the United States, something about which the Secret Service has absolutely no sense of humor.

This is silly of course. Nugent prefers shooting unsuspecting animals, sometimes using illegal commercial bait or a fenced-in controlled environment. This chap is not exactly Hemingway.

Nevertheless, agents were dispatched to the Nugent bunker to divine his intentions, which still had to be a better assignment than pulling the Cartagena card, where careers go to die.

It's more likely the noted author of Cat Scratch Fever was actually suggesting his vocal criticism of Obama meant it would be only a matter of time after the election before Seal Team 6 would be ordered by the leader of the free world to either: assassinate a fading celebrity who wouldn't make the cut on Dancing With the Stars, or place him in solitary confinement and force him to listen to Yoko Ono albums 24 hours a day.

In the addled brain of Ted Nugent, the president of the United States wakes up every morning and asks his national security adviser: "Quick, what did Ted Nugent say about me?"

This may be a humbling revelation to Nugent, but it's probable Obama doesn't give a rat's patootie about his political ramblings. The president has just one or two other more important issues to deal with.

Still, Mitt Romney ought to care that he just landed the endorsement of a guy whose attitudes toward the opposite sex make the Taliban look like a chapter of the National Organization for Women.

Throughout the campaign season, Republicans have been fending off accusations of being more misogynistic than Archie Bunker meets Ralph Kramden. And yet Romney practically went all weak in the knees over Nugent throwing his 16th century support in his general direction.

Even odder, apparently Romney courted Nugent's endorsement, which has to be a bit like seeking the nod of Pete Rose to get into Cooperstown.

Women are running away in droves from the GOP, yet Romney and his giddy sons thought the squeal of approval from the rocker was way cool.

Ted Nugent has a First Amendment right to stay whatever ditsy stuff he wants, including referring to many elected female Democrats as either b------, criminals, communists or "varmints." Varmints? In a free country you're free to be a bore.

For his part, all Romney could muster when he was informed he had just been endorsed by a guy who makes Ike Turner look like Phil Donahue was to issue a call for greater civility. It's a little late for that, Willard.

Would Romney be so circumspect if some critic characterized his wife Ann as a …, well let's go with varmint? Unlikely.

Perhaps Romney is of the opinion the critical Nugent blessing will help with that rootin'-tootin', gun-toting, good ol' boy crowd. Maybe in Nugent, the uptight, pinched Romney can vicariously live out his inner Bubba yearning to keep women in the kitchen whipping up roadkill.

If Romney can't stand up to Ted Nugent and tell him to take his goober endorsement and hit the road, how would he handle Vladimir Putin when the Russian president decides to go all Cold War on everybody? Plead for greater civility?

As for Deliverance's answer to Cole Porter, for all the faux bravado and delusions of persecution, don't you suspect when the Secret Service badges showed up, Ted Nugent turned into a whimpering, apologetic … well, let's go with varmint?

Varmint hunting on the campaign trail 04/19/12 [Last modified: Thursday, April 19, 2012 6:33pm]
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