Fresh off of my Great American Ballpark Tour 2005 (which, for those interested, my brother has written up on his web page), I read this distressing story from the Washington Post. It seems my congressman, Republican Tom Davis, is upset that liberal billionaire George Soros is making a bid to own the new hometown heroes, the Washington Nationals. Davis, along with a number of congressional Republicans, are making noise about revoking the MLB’s antitrust exemption should baseball award the franchise to Soros, who has made one of eight bids for the franchise (most valued between $300 and $400 million). Despite the irksome nature of Mr. Soros, I think this is a petty political move by Davis and company. Baseball is a private enterprise and those in the brain trust should have the freedom to chose whom they want to award the franchise to without government threat. Let us also remember that Tom Davis was one of leading voices for placing the Nationals here in Northern Virginia, so the threat smells a bit of sour grapes on his part. GOP lawmakers also need to remember that every Soros dollar tied up in baseball won’t be spent attacking President Bush. Congress should stay out this business and just let baseball do what’s best for baseball.
And Sally Jenkins points out, if it was ok for a Nazi enthusiast like Marge Schott to own a baseball team, it is ridiculous that a Nobel Prize-nominated liberal be excluded on political grounds.