Virginia Gubernatorial Candidates Stumble on Redskins Name During Debate

Area fans don’t think the name should be changed. What about these candidates?

Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III during a game against the Detroit Lions in Landover, Md.
National Journal
Matt Vasilogambros
Sept. 26, 2013, 6:15 a.m.

Al­though the team is based in Mary­land and has Wash­ing­ton’s name­sake, the Red­skins foot­ball team was the sub­ject of a ques­tion dur­ing the Vir­gin­ia gubernat­ori­al de­bate on Wed­nes­day night. And it caught the can­did­ates off-guard.

NBC’s Chuck Todd, the mod­er­at­or of the de­bate and a big sports fan, asked if the name should be changed, cit­ing wide­spread con­cern over its of­fens­ive­ness to Nat­ive Amer­ic­ans. It seems to be one of the few is­sues the two rivals agree on.

First up was Demo­crat­ic can­did­ate Terry McAul­iffe, who stumbled on the ques­tion:

“I don’t think the gov­ernor ought to be telling private busi­nesses what they should do about their busi­ness,” he said at first.

Todd in­ter­jec­ted, “Even if it’s of­fens­ive to people?”

“I don’t think the gov­ernor should be telling private busi­nesses,” McAul­iffe in­sisted.

“Do you have a per­son­al opin­ion on it?” Todd pressed.

“As gov­ernor, I’m not go­ing to tell Dan Snyder or any­body else what they should do in busi­ness. And I want to con­grat­u­late the Red­skins, be­cause I went down to the train­ing park in Rich­mond, and it is spec­tac­u­lar, Gov­ernor Mc­Don­nell,” McAul­iffe said be­fore get­ting heckled by a mem­ber of the crowd and cut off by Todd.

Hav­ing wit­nessed this, Cuc­cinelli was bet­ter pre­pared.

“I think that is up to them en­tirely,” Cuc­cinelli said. “I think that 80 years of his­tory with that team is kind of hard to leave be­hind. I un­der­stand that. I also don’t think RGIII should have been played in the second quarter in the play­offs last years.”

Quar­ter­back Robert Griffin III, also known as RGIII, suffered a sea­son-end­ing in­jury after play­ing in game des­pite a doc­tor’s warn­ing. Wheth­er he should have played has been a con­ten­tious de­bate for some months.

And maybe the can­did­ates’ an­swers, however un­grace­ful, were smart polit­ic­ally. Ac­cord­ing to a Wash­ing­ton Post poll re­leased in June, 61 per­cent of Wash­ing­ton area res­id­ents like the name of the foot­ball team and two-thirds say the team shouldn’t change its name.

Though it doesn’t look like there’s go­ing to be any pres­sure from the Old Domin­ion to do so, some still in­sist that own­er Dan Snyder make a change. Even some mem­bers of Con­gress have pub­licly called for a name change.

Here’s the video of the de­bate ex­change:

What We're Following See More »
STAFF PICKS
When It Comes to Mining Asteroids, Technology Is Only the First Problem
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Obama Reflects on His Economic Record
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Reagan Families, Allies Lash Out at Will Ferrell
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."

Source:
PEAK CONFIDENCE
Clinton No Longer Running Primary Ads
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-ex­pec­ted primary battle be­hind her, former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton (D) is no longer go­ing on the air in up­com­ing primary states. “Team Clin­ton hasn’t spent a single cent in … Cali­for­nia, In­di­ana, Ken­tucky, Ore­gon and West Vir­gin­ia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “cam­paign has spent a little more than $1 mil­lion in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone back­er in the Sen­ate, said the can­did­ate should end his pres­id­en­tial cam­paign if he’s los­ing to Hil­lary Clin­ton after the primary sea­son con­cludes in June, break­ing sharply with the can­did­ate who is vow­ing to take his in­sur­gent bid to the party con­ven­tion in Phil­adelphia.”

Source:
CITIZENS UNITED PT. 2?
Movie Based on ‘Clinton Cash’ to Debut at Cannes
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE

The team behind the bestselling "Clinton Cash"—author Peter Schweizer and Breitbart's Stephen Bannon—is turning the book into a movie that will have its U.S. premiere just before the Democratic National Convention this summer. The film will get its global debut "next month in Cannes, France, during the Cannes Film Festival. (The movie is not a part of the festival, but will be shown at a screening arranged for distributors)." Bloomberg has a trailer up, pointing out that it's "less Ken Burns than Jerry Bruckheimer, featuring blood-drenched money, radical madrassas, and ominous footage of the Clintons."

Source:
×