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ESPN Drops Hank Williams Jr. Theme Song Over Obama 'Hitler' Comment

ESPN has removed the popular theme song, “Are you ready for some football?” from Monday night NFL broadcast after country music entertainer Hank Williams Jr. compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler during a Monday morning interview on “Fox & Friends.”

Williams Jr., who is the son of legendary country artist Hank Williams, is no stranger to controversy and well-known for his outlandish comments and opinions. However, during the interview, Williams was commenting on the recent golf outing between Obama, Vice President Biden, House Speaker John Boehner and Ohio Gov. John Kasich. “It’d be like Hitler playing golf with [Israeli Prime Minister] Netanyahu.”

In referring to the president and vice president, Williams added, “They’re the enemy.”

“You used the name of one of the most hated people in all of the world to describe, I think, the president,” said “Fox & Friends” co-host Gretchen Carlson.

“Well, that is true. But I’m telling you like it is,” Williams commented.

ESPN issued a statement on the controversy and Williams’ comments on Monday. “While Hank Williams Jr. is not an ESPN employee, we recognize he is closely linked to our company through the opening to Monday Night Football. We are extremely disappointed with his comments, and as a result have decided to pull the open from tonight’s telecast.”

Later in the day, Williams released a statement through his publicist trying to clarify his comments. “Some of us have strong opinions and are often misunderstood. My analogy was extreme – but it was to make a point,” stated Williams. “I was simply trying to explain how stupid it seemed to me – how ludicrous that pairing was. They’re (Obama and Boehner) polar opposites and it made no sense. They don’t see eye-to-eye and never will. I have always respected the office of the President.”

A clip of Williams’ appearance can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1eF6vCv13bw.

The introductory song for the Monday night telecast is a remake from Williams’ 1984 hit song, “All My Rowdy Friends are Coming Over Tonight,” and was initially the theme song to Monday Night Football that aired on ABC. The song debuted in 1989 and won Williams four Emmy Awards.

“Every time the media brings up the Tea Party, it’s painted as racist and extremist – but there’s never a backlash – no outrage to those comparisons,” Williams pointed out in his lengthy statement. “Working-class people are hurting – and it doesn’t seem like anybody cares. When both sides are high-fiving it on the ninth hole, when everybody else is without a job, it makes a whole lot of us angry. Something has to change. The policies have to change.”

Outside of hosting and playing at fundraisers for candidates and elected officials, Williams has never been involved in politics. However, he has indicated he is interested in a future run for the U.S. Senate in Tennessee.

ESPN has not indicated if it will continue to air the song on future Monday night broadcasts.

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