I hope he makes a statement so as to clarify what actually happened. It may be that he is straight up guilty, and it maybe that he he didn't want to destroy the Guides life by throwing him to the wolves. You can't deny the good work he has done for hunting rights and the NRA, my guess is that there is more to this story.
Whether he had a guide or not is beside the point. If he was the hunter/shooter, it is his responsibility to know the laws and abide by them. I don't care if he wasn't a resident of California and that he hired a guide. He shot the deer over bait -- a clearly illegal activity where he did this. (You can question the accuracy of the reporters, I suppose, but even the California Deer Association Board of Directors agrees that he was the shooter in an illegal setting).
The guide certainly has an ethical responsibility to accurately advise the client, but the client is ultimately responsible for obeying (or violating) the law. For instance, if I'm floating the Yakima with a guide and they tell me they don't want to pinch the barbs because too many trout throw barbless hooks, I'll object and pitch the barb myself. If I don't and I get checked by WDFW officers with a barbed hook in the water, I'm at fault, not the guide.
The fact that Nugent was filming the event for a commercial venture further confirms his stupidty. If you are going to document your activities on video and then distribute that video to the public, you damn well better be sure EVERY ACTION on that video is above reproach.
Nugent is a loud mouth dumbass who cares more about his own ego and his ability to kill things than he does about hunter ethics and hunting conservation. He has done far more harm to the cause of good hunting ethics and conservation than he has done good. Personally, I'd like to see the responsible, respectable hunting community come down hard on him as they would any other poacher.