Reid: NFL should follow NBA to stop racism


Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidOvernight Finance: Obama signs Puerto Rico bill | Trump steps up attacks on trade | Dodd-Frank backers cheer 'too big to fail' decision | New pressure to fill Ex-Im board Iowa poll: Clinton up 14 on Trump, Grassley in tight race with Dem Lynch meeting with Bill Clinton creates firestorm for email case MORE (D-Nev.) urged the NFL to follow the NBA's lead by forcing the Washington Redskins owner to change the team name.

On the Senate floor Wednesday, Reid applauded the NBA’s decision to ban Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life, saying his behavior in making racially charged comments about African-Americans was “harmful and racist.”

But Reid pointed out that the NFL hasn’t taken such action despite calls from lawmakers and Native American groups who say the team name of the Washington Redskins is racist.

Redskins owner Daniel Snyder has said he doesn’t want to change the team name because it wouldn’t honor tradition.

“It’s untoward for Daniel Snyder to hide behind ‘tradition,’” the Nevada lawmaker said. “What tradition? The tradition of racism.”

Reid said that because Snyder “fails to show any leadership,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell should ban the team name from the league.

“Since Snyder fails to show any leadership, the NFL should take an assist from the NBA’s lead and pick up the slack,” Reid said. “I say to commissioner Roger Goodell remove this hateful term from your league's vocabulary and rid the league of racism and bigotry.” 

The Democratic leader made headlines last year when he initally called on Snyder to change the team's name, calling him "shortsighted" for continuing to use the controversial moniker.

More in Senate

Reid: Iraq War vote 'biggest regret'

Read more »