Young Turks founder Cenk Uygur
, who is seeking a congressional seat in California, told CNN on Monday that his past remarks about women were an attempt “to be a stupid, politically incorrect Republican.”
“First of all, I wrote that stuff 19 years ago; I deleted it 15 years ago,” Uygur told CNN host Chris Cuomo
during an on-set interview. “I deleted it not because I thought I’d get caught or someone would find it, I deleted it because I didn’t believe it anymore. This is not me. I was trying to be a stupid, politically incorrect Republican. So I wrote these things I knew were offensive.”
Uygur, 49, is running for the House seat
previously held by Rep. Katie Hill (D-Calif.), who announced her resignation in October amid allegations of sexual misconduct.
Uygur said members of the alt-right and “Democrats who are part of the Democratic machine” are the ones resurfacing his past comments.
In 2017, TheWrap.com
, which is not considered a partisan outlet, published comments by Uygur dating back to 1999 that included his contention that women are “poorly designed creatures” who have “flawed” genes.
“Obviously, the genes of women are flawed,” Uygur wrote in a 1999 blog post. “They are poorly designed creatures who do not want to have sex nearly as often as needed for the human race to get along peaceably and fruitfully.”
In another entry, Uygur’s “rules of dating” included that there “must be orgasm by the fifth date.”
Uygur apologized for the comments in an interview with The Wrap, saying he deleted the posts more than a decade ago because he no longer stood by them.
“The stuff I wrote back then was really insensitive and ignorant,” Uygur said. “If you read that today, what I wrote 18 years ago, and you’re offended by it, you’re 100 percent right. And anyone who is subjected to that material, I apologize to. And I deeply regret having written that stuff when I was a different guy.”
Justice Democrats, a left-leaning progressive political organization which Uygur co-founded, ousted him from its board in December 2017 after the comments found by TheWrap.com went viral.
“The Young Turks” began as a radio program in 2002 before becoming a popular web series among progressives in 2005.