Legislators in D.C. and Maryland have proposed bills barring public money or land from going to Washington’s NFL team so long as it’s called the “Redskins,” and while both face uphill battles, the Washington Post has its eyes on the real story here: Ooh, boy, maybe this means Virginia will get the team now!
A bill proposed by Maryland and District lawmakers this week could give Virginia an edge in landing the Redskins’ next stadium…
Virginia may be the easiest jurisdiction to cut a deal with. Gov. Terry McAuliffe has no problem with the team’s name and has been talking to the Redskins since last summer…
[Team owner Daniel] Snyder needs to move quickly: McAuliffe’s term ends next January and who knows how his successor will feel about pledging $1 billion in public money or the team’s controversial name.
The Washingtonian, meanwhile, says that one bidder isn’t nearly enough, so really West Virginia and Delaware should get in on the action, so that Snyder can get the best deal possible:
Snyder will need at least three bidders to get the best deal for the consistently mediocre team, which has a racist slur for a name. Should the proposed legislation in Maryland and DC succeed, it would be an ideal time for some of the wider Washington area make a play for the Redskins.
Delaware is a summer base for many Washingtonians and a two-hour drive isn’t out of the question for rabid football fans (even if people who actually live in Delaware are more likely to follow the Eagles or Giants). It’s facing a tough budget crunch, but maybe there’s a little room for football on the books? And then there’s West Virginia, a state that belongs to the Pittsburgh Steelers but includes part of the same metropolitan statistical area as what most people consider to be Washington. It, too, is within the arguable limits for a Sunday drive, and it’s the closest red state, an increasingly important criterion for this team. That new stadium design could even work in Charleston, maybe!
The Washingtonian is joking, I think. I have no explanation for why the Post seems to think that a governor who is willing to spend $1 billion so that a team owned by an asshole billionaire who is at best an unrepentant apologist for racism can replace its stadium that’s just 20 years old is an opportunity for Virginia, and not a danger to be avoided.