Longview, Texas Pays Ted Nugent Not To Perform
Usually it's venues paying top dollar to book talent, but Longview, TX is now shelling out to keep Ted Nugent from performing at their 4th of July celebration.
Out-spoken musical legend Ted Nugent is being paid $16,250 - nearly half of his appearance fee - by the city of Longview in order to break their verbal agreement for Nugent to headline the Fireworks and Freedom Celebration at Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Center. Nugent's controversial comments and song lyrics during a campaign run for Texas gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott was part of the reason for the cancelation. According to city spokesman Shawn Hara,
(There were) a variety of reasons. Cost, structure, is it the right musical act for this type of event — a city-sponsored, family-oriented overall event. They decided no, we don’t want to move forward, it is not the right act for this. At that point we decided to end discussions.
Keith Rothra, outgoing chairman of the Gregg County Republican Party, criticized the city's decision, saying they are paying Nugent over $16,000 for political correctness. The controversy of Nugent and his connection to Abbot centered around lyrics and comments recently Nugent made about immigration, child molestation, and calling President Obama a "subhuman mongrel", an insult that both Gov. Rick Perry and Senator Ted Cruz have publically spoken out against.
Longview, TX Mayor Jay Dean agreed with the decision to cancel contract negotiations with Nugent,
That didn’t really fit what we trying to put together, a family oriented program ... and I confirmed with his thoughts that that probably wasn’t the right act. And I still feel that it was the right decision. It just didn’t fit with what we were trying to put together.