Thursday, July 19, 2012

NFL Team Makes Political Contribution

A football team donates to Jan Brewer's PAC:
The Arizona Cardinals have yet to win a Super Bowl, but they’re champs when it comes to super PACs.
A $5,000 donation last month from the Cardinals to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s JAN PAC committee appears to be the first time a National Football League club has institutionally contributed to a federal super PAC, which may raise unlimited amounts of money from individuals, corporations, unions — even sports teams
Brewer's PAC doesn't seem do deal with sports issues unless one believes that Obamacare will make it more difficult for millionaires to get ACL surgery or proper treatment for a concussion:
A PAC spokesperson could not be reached for comment, although JAN PAC’s website states that the super PAC is “dedicated” to four goals, including “securing the border and restoring integrity to our immigration system,” “fighting ObamaCare,” “creating jobs – getting Americans back to work” and “reducing the size of government.” The super PAC formed in October. Brewer frequently takes to national television to tout these positions and has notably sparred with President Barack Obama, earning her accolades from conservatives in particular.
Travis Waldron points out that there may be other reasons for the Cardinals political interests:
The Cardinals’ donation to Brewer isn’t huge, and given the nature of Brewer’s PAC (aptly named JAN PAC), why the team made the donation now is unclear. The implications for the future, however, aren’t hard to imagine, as the franchise’s choice to get political demonstrates how the Court’s decision in Citizens United, together with subsequent decisions expanding the allowance of corporate campaign cash in our elections, has changed the game for professional sports franchises the way it did for other corporations.

Across the country, professional sports franchises have negotiated various tax breaks and other public financing deals to get what they want — new stadiums, improved infrastructure, a more generous split of gameday (and non-gameday) revenues. The deals are popular with politicians, who soak up the promises of economic boosts and who, faced with threats of the team moving to a new city, are scared to be part of the group that let the team walk away. Popular as they may be, though, the deals leave taxpayers footing the bill when they fail to provide the promised economic boom, instead pushing cities and states into debt.

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