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Oct 6-18, 2012 Headlines: Athlete endorsements, VP Candidate football visits, ‘n’ NY/NJ MMA & NCAA Battles

Former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W Bush with St Louis Cardinals Andre Roberts, Jay Feely, Larry Fitzgerald, Rich Bartel, and Sam Acho

The Cardinals and the Presidents

Former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W Bush with St Louis Cardinals Andre Roberts, Jay Feely, Larry Fitzgerald, Rich Bartel, and Sam Acho (blog)   Thurs, Oct 11 2012

Larry Fitzgerald has had a chance to be around former President George W. Bush and former President Bill Clinton before — because, you know, that’s how he rolls — but the Cardinals wide receiver and a handful of teammates got a few minutes in with both Wednesday night, an experience they weren’t going to forget. Kicker Jay Feely (who has played golf with Bush, actually), linebacker Sam Acho, wide receiver Andre Roberts and former Cards quarterback Rich Bartel all joined Fitz at the debate/speeches by the former Presidents at the Deutsche Bank Financial Summit. Before the event, for about 20 minutes, the quartet even got to sit and chat with the Presidents, talking “sports and policy,” Feely said. And also about Acho’s background. Fitzgerald went to Africa with Clinton in the offseason to help distribute hearing aids together. The subject came up and Fitzgerald pointed out to Clinton that Acho too had done charity work  in Nigeria…“It was great listening and learning from them,” said Feely, who has talked about his own desire about getting into politics when his football career is over.

Coach Dungy asks Obama, Romney to make fatherhood an issue

Washington Times (blog)   Thurs, Oct 18 2012

Super Bowl-winning football coach Tony Dungy has started an online petition urging President Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney to make fatherhood a top campaign issue. Mr. Dungy said he was urging both of the major candidates to “put the issue of fatherhood at the forefront of our nation’s attention as you discuss issues publicly in the final stretch of this campaign,” according to a statement on the petition’s website. “Now more than ever, American families need strong leadership. I trust and pray that you agree and will stand with us to make tackling the issue of fatherlessness a priority.”

Obama camp taps NBA, NFL stars

CNN (blog)   Mon, Oct 8 2012

Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama’s campaign is tapping into some athletic star power in three new web videos meant to encourage sports fans to register to vote for the president…”It means keeping your eye on the ball and never losing sight of what’s most important,” says seven-time NBA all-star Alonso Mourning. “I believe America is still the greatest country in the world, and I am voting for President Obama.” Current and former NBA and WNBA players Dahntay Jones, Harrison Barnes, Etan Thomas, Kym Hampton, Vince Carter, and Juwan Howard are all shown wearing Obama 2012 basketball jerseys while listing off reasons why they support the president.

NFL Players Join Obama’s Team To Get Out The Vote

Huffington Post   Fri, Oct 5 2012

Three NFL players touted their support for President Barack Obama in a web video released Friday and encouraged viewers to register to vote. Matt Forte of the Chicago Bears (Obama’s team), Maurice Jones-Drew of the Jacksonville Jaguars, and Antoine Bethea of the Indianapolis Colts star in the video. “And the other side is out there, ready to tear it all down,” Jones Drew says. “So are you are going to sit down and let that happen? Or stand up and speak out?” Forte says. “Go to right now,” Jones Drew says.

New York Giants’ Victor Cruz Makes Play for Obama to get Latinos to Polls

New York Giants Victor Cruz

Fox News   Mon, Oct 8 2012

Stepping away from the field, New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz has a message he wants to share with the Latino community that has nothing to do with football. Instead Cruz is making a play for President Obama, campaigning for his re-election in a new video targeted towards Latino voters.

Romney counters with his own NFL star, Bengals’ legend Anthony Munoz

Washington Times (blog)   Sat, Oct 13 2012

Mr. Romney has been campaigning throughout battleground Ohio with his own NFL star, Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz, the former Cincinnati Bengal many consider the game’s all-time best offensive lineman…On Saturday afternoon at a rally in Lebanon, Ohio, Mr. Romney drew raucous cheers after acknowledging Mr. Munoz during his stump speech. Mr. Munoz, the only member of the Bengals franchise to be selected to the NFL Hall of Fame, has long been a fixture in conservative politics in Ohio.

Palm Beach NFL Owners Gang up on Obama!

Gossip Extra   Tues, Oct 16 2012

No fewer than three — count ‘em — three owners of National Football League teams are among the organizers of one of the last Florida fundraisers for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney before the November 6 election. Gossip Extra has learned that Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, Washington Redskins part-owner Dwight Schar and New York Jets owner Woody Johnson are among those involved in two big-money anti-Barack Obama events Saturday afternoon in Palm Beach…“It’s a business thing not a sports thing: Every businessman in the country is voting for Romney except those who get subsidies,”  said local Republican boss Sid Dinerstein. “Whether you’re in NASCAR or the owner of the Redskins, you’re not just a successful business guy. You have $1 billion or more.”

Olympic figure skater campaigns for Romney in NH

Auburn Citizen   Tues, Oct 16 2012

NASHUA, N.H. (AP) — Figure skating champion Scott Hamilton is heading to New Hampshire to campaign for the Romney-Ryan presidential ticket. Hamilton, winner of the 1984 Olympic gold medal and a four-time world champion, will be part of a bus tour Tuesday, with stops planned in Nashua, Rindge, New London, Henniker and Manchester. The campaign says Hamilton will emphasize that the nation needs the kind of leadership Romney showed in saving the 2002 Winter Olympics from massive budget shortfalls.

NBA’s Spencer Hawes endorses Romney

The Hill   Tues, Oct 16 2012

Basketball’s Spencer Hawes (Sacramento Kings) plans to use his height to Mitt Romney’s advantage during the remaining three weeks before the election…this year that he is not a supporter of noted basketball fan President Obama, or of the president’s signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act. When the Supreme Court handed down its ruling that the healthcare reform legislation is constitutional in June, Hawes tweeted: “Ronald Reagan is spinning in his grave. We might as well be in Russia in 1983.”..The Romney campaign earlier this week announced a coalition of “Sportsmen for Romney” that included baseball Hall of Fame’s Wade Boggs and Olympic medalist Kim Rhode, but Hawes was not among them. Members of the Romney campaign re-tweeted Hawes’s tweet on Tuesday.

Mitt Romney praises Detroit Tigers, then hears opposition in Metro Detroit roar   Thurs, Oct 18 2012

DETROIT, MI – Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, a Detroit native, appeared to make a kind gesture on Twitter Thursday night after the Tigers beat the Yankees and earned their second trip to the World Series since 2006. He praised the team for their accomplishment; then his political opposition in Metro Detroit appeared to go on attack.  At least 12 of the first 18 responses to Romney’s post left on his Twitter page appeared to share an anti-Romney sentiment. And it was pretty clear by 9:30 p.m. Thursday that negative posts in Metro Detroit to Romney’s message appeared to trump positive ones for his potential presidency. That being said, Romney’s Tigers message – at that time – was “favorited” by users 730 times and re-tweeted 2,615 times.

President Obama meets with Wisconsin basketball team during campaign stop   Sun, Oct 7 2012

President Obama likely won’t need much help winning the youth vote in November’s presidential election, but his decision to meet with the Wisconsin basketball team could very well have secured the votes of 16 young men in the Badger State. After a Twitter campaign by forward Zach Bohannon and some convenient connections to the Obama campaign, the Wisconsin team was able to score a few minutes with Obama before a campaign stop in Madison this week.

Poll: NASCAR fans prefer Mitt Romney over Barack Obama by wide margin

SB Nation   Wed, Oct 10 2012

A new poll released Wednesday by the conservative Race Fans 4 Freedom organization indicates NASCAR fans are more unhappy with the direction of the country than other voters and prefer Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney over President Barack Obama by a wide margin…Romney is preferred by 63 percent of NASCAR fans, while only 34 percent said they prefer Obama (58 percent of the voters surveyed said they are Republicans). Obama has a one-point lead over Romney (49-48) with the general population, the poll found.


VP candidate, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, at Doyt Perry Stadium, Bowling Green-Miami University football game, THE BLADE:DAVE ZAPOTOSKY

Crowd greets Ryan at BGSU football game

Toledo Blade   Sat, Oct 13 2012

A cheering crowd greeted GOP running mate Paul Ryan at Bowling Green State University, where he stopped for some tailgating time before today’s football game…where the Falcons were taking on his alma mater, Miami University of Ohio.

VP candidate fumbles QB’s names at Browns practice   Wed, Oct 17 2012

Paul Ryan & Browns Left Tackle Joe Thomas

BEREA, OHIO (AP)- On a visit to the Cleveland Browns, vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan fumbled. Ryan stopped by the team’s complex with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice – a lifelong Cleveland fan – as the Browns were beginning practice Wednesday. While addressing the huddled players, Ryan confused Browns backup quarterback Colt McCoy for starter Brandon Weeden. As Ryan spoke, it became obvious that while he was looking at McCoy, he was talking about Weeden, the rookie from Oklahoma State who got his first NFL win last Sunday on his 29th birthday. A few of the Browns players began laughing quietly while others looked away before the candidate realized his mistake. ”I think he saw the red (practice) jerseys and got us mixed up,” Weeden said. ”But he’s got more important things on his mind right now than me and Colt. It was a good laugh.”

Nats fever sweeps Congress, K Street

The Hill (blog)  Wed, Oct 10 2012

Politics in the District has competition from baseball on Wednesday as the city hosts a playoff game for the first time in nearly 80 years…D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay took the friendly sports rivalry to Twitter, sending each other Photoshopped images of government buildings with their respective city flags flying over them… “Gang of Eight talks will keep me from Nats Park today, but I’m rooting for the @Nationals in today’s playoff,” Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) tweeted along with the popular hashtag #natitude…Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a big baseball fan, couldn’t make Wednesday’s game either. His office said he is out of the country, but most likely will be getting updates on the game through his iPhone.

San Francisco Super Bowl campaign kicks off with South Bay in the back seat

San Jose Mercury News   Thurs, Oct 18 2012

SAN FRANCISCO — The official campaign to bring the Super Bowl to the Bay Area kicked off Thursday, and it left no doubt which city will be on center stage. Sorry, Santa Clara. At a news conference in San Francisco, Mayor Ed Lee and other city leaders unveiled official marketing materials led by a logo that shows Golden Gate Bridge-style football goal posts featuring the title “SF Super Bowl.” They boasted of the need to bring the “world-class event to a world-class city,” unveiled the website and had an opera singer belt out “I left My Heart in San Francisco.” “Go San Francisco Super Bowl!” Lee said as he kicked off

Maryland governor, Ravens linebacker team up for same-sex marriage fundraiser

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo, left, and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley. Steve Ruark—Associated Press


Washington Post (blog)   Tues, Oct 9 2012

The second floor of the Baltimore bar (Mothers Federal Hill Grille) was the scene of a fundraiser for the cause that had been billed as a Monday Night Football watch party. Many of the 30 or so attendees — some picked by lottery — turned their attention to the Orioles playoff game instead. The TV cameras in the bar were trained on Ayanbadejo, who came with his young family in tow. Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), who is championing next month’s ballot measure to uphold the state’s new same-sex marriage law, was waiting to greet the linebacker. “Awesome of you to do this,” O’Malley, decked out casually in jeans and polo shirt, told Ayanbadejo.

UFC again urges Gov. Andrew Cuomo and ESDC to bring MMA to New York

MMATorch   Thurs, Oct 11 2012

The UFC is continuing their efforts to bring MMA to New York State this week, reaching out to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo this week amidst reports of a new sports division within the Empire State Development Corporation. According to the New York Post, the division would be put in place “to aggressively seek the expansion of professional and amateur sporting events around the state.”

Well, the UFC believes they are one such sporting endeavor that would help boost tourism and the local economies of the cities in which they could run. With that in mind, UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta once again made the case for legalizing the sport in the state.

New Jersey Sports Betting Law Spurs Move by NCAA

New York Times    Tues, Oct 16 2012

The N.C.A.A. is planning to relocate six championships from New Jersey, blaming a new state law there allowing sports betting on collegiate and professional games. The association, which prohibits championships being held in states where gambling on single games is legal, said in a statement released late Monday that the competitions, all planned for next year, would be moved to other locations yet to be determined….The N.C.A.A.’s decision was met with consternation by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who signed the law in January and has called it common-sense public policy. A spokesman for the governor, Michael Drewniak, said in a statement that the law prohibited betting on college games being played in the state or any college game involving a New Jersey team, regardless of where it was played. “The N.C.A.A. wants to penalize New Jersey for responsibly legalizing what occurs illegally every day in every state and often with the participation of organized crime,” the spokesman said. “But the N.C.A.A. looks the other way for that? Ludicrous and hypocritical.”

N.J. Gives Giants Town a Week to Pass Budget, Produce Documents

San Francisco Chronicle   Wed, Oct 17 2012

Oct. 17 (Bloomberg) — New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s administration has given East Rutherford, home to the National Football League’s New York Giants and Jets stadium, a week to approve a budget or it may impose one. East Rutherford is the last municipality without a budget out of more than 550 in the state that operate on a calendar year, said Thomas Neff, director of the state’s Local Government Services division. The borough has been locked in a legal battle with the Giants over whether its training center is exempt from a $1.5 million property-tax bill.

Gov. Rick Scott signs youth sports head injury bill at Ponte Vedra High

WJXT Jacksonville   Fri, Oct 12 2012

PONTE VEDRA, Fla. – Florida Gov. Rick Scott visited Ponte Vedra High School on Friday to sign a bill designed to help reduce youth sports head injuries. House Bill 291 requires coaches and others to immediately remove players from a game or practice following a head injury and prevents the student-athlete from returning to competition until the player has been cleared by a doctor. “It is important to remember that as much excitement as we get from our children’s sporting events, safety always comes first,” Scott said.

Quinn, Emanuel Spar Over Governor’s Appointee To Sports Board

CBS2 Chicago   Mon, Oct 8 2012

CHICAGO (CBS) — Mayor Emanuel and Gov. Quinn are clashing over Quinn’s choice to head the agency that finances and runs some major sports facilities. Kelly Kraft, the governor’s pick to head the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority, is a former spokeswoman and assistant agency director for his administration. Emanuel says he has nothing against Kraft personally, but says his own appointees to the sports agency have had business and financial backgrounds…Quinn countered that Kraft is a former assistant budget director. He says the mayor and his operatives should stop questioning her credentials.

Lt. Governor wants to see Albany Devils in Atlantic City permanently

Press of Atlantic City   Fri, Oct 12 2012

ATLANTIC CITY — The New Jersey Devils’ mascot and four former players sat in the front row of a news conference Thursday morning at Boardwalk Hall to promote their minor-league club’s four games this season at the historic building. Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno hopes the minor-league team decides to make the Hall its home. “I look forward to … maybe some type of permanent association with the farm team,” Guadagno said of the Devils’ minor-league club in Albany, N.Y., which has the lowest attendance in the American Hockey League.

Mayor urges Capitals owner to end lockout

WTOP   Fri, Oct 12 2012

WASHINGTON – D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray says he’s asked Capitals owner, Ted Leonsis, to help end the NHL lockout now in its fourth week. “We’ve urged him, whatever he can do, whatever influence he can wield on this, let’s get this over with,” Gray says…But Gray says he’s concerned that any prolonged lockout that erodes further at the season would have a major negative impact on the local economy.

NHL reportedly hires GOP strategist to craft PR campaign

Welland Tribune   Mon, Oct 15 2012

While the NHL and NHLPA work out their differences in a boardroom, the league has hired outside help to find out how the labour dispute is affecting fans. The NHL has hired marketing research firm Luntz Global to perform the research. Luntz Global is run by Frank Luntz, a pollster who has advised the likes of George W. Bush and Stephen Harper. Luntz Global ran a focus group Friday of 30 NHL fans to gauge their reaction to images of hockey and statements related to the league’s labour dispute. According to a report from Deadspin, the focus group was also used to test pro-ownership messages.

St. Louis, San Francisco mayors talking trash, making wagers (blog)   Mon, Oct 15 2012

We see this type of thing quite frequently in the NFL, but it seems a bit more rare in baseball. That thing is mayors of two cities (San Francisco and St. Louis) with teams competing for a championship locking horns over their Cardinals and Giants on the Internet. It’s San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee vs. St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay. First, the bet, via  “The Mayor of the losing city will change his Twitter profile picture to the logo of the winning team for a day. Also, the losing Mayor will send food and beverages traditionally associated with the respective cities so the winning Mayor can invite the community into City Hall for a party to celebrate. Mayor Lee will send dim sum and Anchor Steam Beer. Mayor Slay will send St. Louis barbecue, toasted ravioli and a court of St. Louis brews, led by the King of Beers.”

LB wears Gerald Ford’s number

Michigan linebacker Desmond Morgan awarded the No. 48 jersey (the third jersey Michichigan jersey of former President Ford

ESPN   Sat, Oct 13 2012

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Michigan sophomore linebacker Desmond Morgan was awarded the No. 48 jersey (the third jersey Michigan put back into circulation this season) of former United States President Gerald R. Ford (38th president of the United States) prior to Saturday’s game against Illinois. Ford played at Michigan from 1932 to 1934 as a center and a linebacker. He won two national championships in 1932 and 1933 and was named Michigan’s most valuable player in 1934…Morgan is Michigan’s fourth-leading tackler with 28 and tied for the team lead with four tackles for loss. He has 91 tackles and eight tackles for loss in his career.

Condi Rice, college football mascot

Washington Examiner   Sun, Oct 14 2012

College football fans have produced a new, unexpected mascot: former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. During ESPN’s pre-game coverage of the Notre Dame/Stanford match-up on Saturday, a large cardboard cutout of Rice bobbed in the crowd behind ESPN guest commentator Vince Vaughn. The mystery remains, however, which school was rallying around the secretary — Rice has a long history with Stanford and is currently a professor there, but she also holds a master’s degree from Notre Dame.

Bolivia’s President Evo Morales plays soccer with Peruvian workers in Lima, October 1, 2012. President Morales is in Peru to attend a summit of leaders from South America and Arab states on October 1

Sept 20-Oct 5, 2012 Headlines: Teddy Wins, NFL Ref Headaches, & Presidential World Series Prediction

Teddy Finally Wins!

ESPN    Wed, Oct 3 2012

WASHINGTON — Teddy wins! Teddy wins! For the first time, the Teddy Roosevelt mascot won the Presidents Race in the middle of the fourth inning at Nationals Park — a pursuit that drew attention even from a White House spokesman and Sen. John McCain. Teddy — Mr. Rough Rider, himself — had lost 533 times since 2006…Teddy was helped when a green mascot wearing a Phillies jersey — a distant cousin of the Phillie Phanatic, perhaps? — knocked down the other three presidents.

Elway endorses Romney, Ryan   Tues, Oct 2 2012

Mitt Romney endorsed by Broncos President John Elway

No matter which team or party you support, it’s always interesting to see who endorses what party and why. This week, NFL legend John Elway announced his support of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, according to a press release on Romney’s Website. “Governor Romney is a proven leader with the experience and background to turn around our struggling economy,” said John Elway. “In these tough economic times, we need a president who understands how to get America working again

Barack Obama Offers World Series Prediction: White Sox vs. Nationals

US President Barack Obama throws out the first pitch at Nationals Park in Washington, DC, April 5, 2010, on baseball’s opening day prior to the game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Washington Nationals. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Huffington Post   Fri, Sept 21 2012

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — President Barack Obama is offering his prediction for the upcoming World Series. Obama says during a campaign stop in Virginia that he is “looking forward to a White Sox-Nationals World Series.”

Fathead Elects President Obama and Candidate Romney as Real Big Heads

U.S. Politics Today   Wed, Oct 3 2012

DETROIT, Oct. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Fathead, the leading brand of officially licensed sports and entertainment wall graphics, best-known for its larger-than-life images, releases Real.Big. Fatheads of President Barack Obama and Nominee Mitt Romney.  Big Heads are what the well-equipped campaigner will be showing their pride with this fall.  Big Heads have officially made campaign signs and banners an obsolete thing of the past.  The Obama and Romney Fathead’s are Big, Bold and very Presidential.  They include additional images that can instantly change a room into campaign headquarters or double as a rally sign.

White House backs McCain’s call for a Teddy win

Washington Post (blog)   Thurs, Sept 20 2012

For years, Teddy Roosevelt backers have figured that only on a significant day in Nats history would their hero finally win a Racing Presidents race. So first, E:60 went in-depth on Teddy, with John McCain telling the program that he was “outraged” by Roosevelt’s long losing streak and was calling for Congressional hearings. Then White House Press Secretary Jay Carney got in on the act, opening his Thursday gaggle aboard Air Force One like this: “I just want to note that there was — Senator McCain gave an important interview the other day, and I think it’s an indication that there’s still a possibility of bipartisanship, bipartisan cooperation and agreement. Because Senator McCain pointedly complained about the fact that at Nationals Stadium, Teddy Roosevelt — the mascot for Teddy Roosevelt has yet to ever win the race among the presidents. This is an outrage…”

Congressmen Seek More Oversight of US Antidoping Agency

New York Times   Fri, Sept 21 2012

WASHINGTON — Two veteran members of Congress introduced bipartisan legislation Friday that would increase Congressional oversight of the United States Anti-Doping Agency, including forcing the agency to provide annual summaries of its enforcement activities. Representatives F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., a Republican from Wisconsin, and John Conyers Jr., a Democrat from Michigan, sponsored the bill. They said it would bolster athletes’ due process protections regarding the antidoping agency’s adjudication of doping cases.

Tom Golisano Gives $12 million to Expand Special Olympics Health Services …

The Herald |   Sun, Sept 23 2012

NEW YORK, SEPT. 23, 2012 — Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action Creates “Healthy Communities” for Athletes with Intellectual Disabilities  Press Conference is 3:45 PM Sunday, September 23 with President Clinton, Tom Golisano and Tim Shriver: Former President William J. Clinton announced today that businessman and philanthropist Tom Golisano will provide $12 million to expand Special Olympics’ health-related services to people with intellectual disabilities – one of the largest and most medically underserved disability groups in the world – which will allow for the launch of a new Healthy Communities initiative.  The commitment was made at the opening of the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting.

Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel: NHL lockout won’t impact downtown arena talks with Katz group

Edmonton Sun   Mon, Sept 24 2012

The NHL lockout has no bearing on discussions surrounding Edmonton’s new downtown arena, says Mayor Stephen Mandel. “Not from our point of view, no,” said Mandel Sunday. “We’re building an arena for the long term and not the short term, and the lockout is an issue that the NHL faces,” he said. “We do hope that the players and the owners settle it, but it has nothing to do with us.”

Mitt Romney: Jack Nicklaus Is ‘Greatest Athlete Of The 20th Century’

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, accompanied by golf legend Jack Nicklaus, shakes hands along the rope line during a campaign rally, Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012 ,in Westerville, Ohio. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Huffington Post   Wed, Sept 26 2012

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney swung through Westerville, Ohio on Wednesday, where he had golf legend Jack Nicklaus teed up to sing his praises. After Nicklaus lauded Romney as a leader who could spur “real recovery” and bring the nation back to “the America we were,” Romney returned the praise, calling Nicklaus the “greatest athlete of the 20th century.”

Woody Johnson Would Take Mitt Romney In The White House, Even If It Meant the Jets Never got to Visit

SportsGrid   Mon, Oct 1 2012

Jets owner Woody Johnson’s job is to assemble a team capable of winning a Super Bowl. Meh to that, says Johnson. The Jets owner, also a prominent fundraiser for Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, would sooner see his pal in the oval office than have his football team win a Super Bowl….“Well I think you always have to put country first,” Johnson said. “So I think it’s very, very important that for – not only us – but in particular for our kids and grandkids that this election come off with Mitt Romney and (Paul) Ryan as president and vice president.”

Greg Anthony featured in new ad supporting Mitt Romney

The Grio   Fri, Oct 5 2012

Former NBA point guard Greg Anthony is no stranger to politics. The native Nevadan is featured in a new ad for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. “I really lost faith in [Barack Obama],” Anthony says in the 30-second ad, which was uploaded to You Tube Friday. “I’m supporting Mitt Romney. He’s a no-excuse kind of guy and over the last four years, I think we’ve heard enough excuses.”

Sports legends back Republican US Sen. Brown

KGET 17   Wed, Oct 3 2012

BOSTON (AP) — Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown is trying to shore up his support among Massachusetts sports fans. Brown’s campaign released a video Wednesday featuring Boston Celtics greats Bob Cousy, Dave Cowens and JoJo White, former New England Patriots quarterback Drew Bledsoe and former NFL players Steve DeOssie and Fred Smerlas. Cowens called Brown a friend and “an independent voice in politics.” White said Brown is “perfect for what he is running for.” One sports legend not in the video is former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling, who endorsed Brown two years ago and campaigned with him during the 2010 special election.

Gov. Christie says he was told proposed Formula 1 race in N.J. is ‘absolutely happening’

The Star-Ledger –    Tues, Oct 2 2012

TRENTON — Drivers, start your engines. On second thought, turn them off. No, start them again. In the latest curve on the drive to bring Formula 1 racing the Hudson River waterfront in June, Gov. Chris Christie today said he had been assured by the organizer of the Grand Prix of America that the race was “absolutely happening.”…Doubts were raised last month, however, when F1’s famously mercurial chief, British billionaire Bernie Ecclestone. told a racing journalist that Hindery’s group had failed to meet deadlines and so they no longer had a contract. Today, the governor was asked about the situation during an unrelated appearance in Dover, and he told reporters he had called Hindery to learn whether the race would happen as announced. “He told me that it’s absolutely happening,” Christie said. “I ain’t looking for problems, and so I heard there might be a problem. I called and reached out and he told me there’s not a problem. It’s on the schedule.”

Sen. Portman, Rodney Atkins take in baseball game

The Hill (blog)   Thurs, Sept 27 2012

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) is hanging out with country singer Rodney Atkins on Thursday ahead of a concert to promote Mitt Romney. Atkins and NFL Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz are both headlining the free “Road to Victory Concert” in Springfield, Ohio, on Thursday night. But ahead of that event, Portman tweeted that he and Atkins were taking in a Cincinnati Reds game.

Mayor Emanuel a golf lover — in a way

Chicago Tribune   Sat, Sept 29 2012

Mayor Rahm Emanuel loves golf. Not to play. Perhaps not even to watch. But while serving as Senior Advisor to President Bill Clinton, Emanuel capitalized on the president’s golf jones. During Saturday’s visit to Medinah for the Ryder Cup, Emanuel said he would get “all the answers I needed” while Clinton practiced on the White House putting green. “Every Sunday he would play,” Emanuel recalled. “I’d get his schedule and would go out and literally get all my work done for the entire week — all the yeses. Always talk to your boss when he’s on the putting green. You can get a lot of your work done your way.”

Council approves arena deal to lure NBA and NHL to Seattle

USA TODAY   Mon, Sept 24 2012

SEATTLE (AP) — A wealthy hedge-fund manager won approval Monday for his plan to bring professional men’s basketball and hockey back to Seattle, with initially skeptical City Council members agreeing to put up $200 million for a new arena after he promised to personally guarantee the city’s debt. Council members voted 6-2 to approve Chris Hansen’s plan for a $490 million arena near the Seahawks and Mariners stadiums south of downtown.

Governor Quinn proclaims Kerry Wood Day in Illinois

Galesburg Register-Mail   Sun, Sept 23 2012

CHICAGO —Gov. Pat Quinn has proclaimed today, Sept. 23, Kerry Wood Day in Illinois. WHEREAS, Kerry Wood began his professional baseball career in 1995 when he was drafted fourth overall by the Chicago Cubs…WHEREAS, Kerry Wood, known by many as “Kid K” quickly became one of the most successful players in the history of the Chicago Cubs as well as the National League…THEREFORE, I Pat Quinn, Governor of the State of Illinois, do hereby proclaim September 23, 2012 as KERRY WOOD DAY in Illinois, in honor of one of the City of Chicago’s truly great treasures.

Governors placing bet on FSU vs. Clemson game

WTXL ABC 27   Fri, Sept 21 2012

Fla. Gov. Rick Scott vs. S. Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida Governor Rick Scott and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley are placing a bet on the outcome of Saturday night’s Florida State Seminole and Clemson Tiger football game in Tallahassee. The results are bound to be delicious — the winning leader receives Florida Key Lime pie and South Carolina BBQ.

 USOC looks to build consensus for Olympic bid

Albany Times Union   Fri, Sept 21 2012

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — When it comes to amassing medals, money and friends around the world, leaders of the U.S. Olympic Committee couldn’t be happier. Yet to bring the Olympics back to the United States, they know they’ll need to keep collecting allies in Washington, too. Speaking at the USOC‘s annual assembly Friday, CEO Scott Blackmun said Olympic leaders need to reach out to politicians in the nation’s capital to shore up support for a possible bid for the 2024 or 2026 Olympics. “We believe the next bid needs to be not only the bid of a city but a bid of a nation,” Blackmun said. “We want to have the White House and the Hill on board with us. We can’t wait two or four years to have them get on board with us.”

Photo Gallery: Olympic Visitors at the White House Through the Years

White   Fri, Sept 21 2012

President and Mrs. Obama welcomed the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams to the White House, we were all reminded of the incredible talents and amazing journeys that these athletes shared with us, and how our summers were even more thrilling as we watched them on the world stage. It has long been a tradition for the President and First Lady to invite the Olympic teams to the White House, and as President and Mrs. Obama exclaimed last week, they, too, were fans just like the rest of us. The holdings of the Presidential Libraries of the National Archives offer a special look at Olympic memories of years past.

Ex-FSU, Cavaliers player Davis pardoned in Fla.

San Francisco Chronicle   Thurs, Sept 20 2012

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Former Florida State and Cleveland Cavaliers basketball player Harry Davis received a conditional pardon from Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet for a 1987 cocaine conviction. Davis, 56, told the officials he needed the pardon to pass background checks so he can do volunteer work coaching and counseling children and obtain a massage therapist license. The 6-foot-7 Davis currently works as part of the Cav Legends, former players who schmooze with luxury box fans during the basketball season. He also has a part-time job driving a hotel shuttle bus in Cleveland.

Tommy Thompson’s history with the Packers highlighted by this …

LomdardiAve   Thurs, Sept 20 2012

Tommy Thompson – yes that same four-times-elected governor of the great state of Wisconsin and candidate for the U.S. Senate seat – has long been a Green Bay Packers fan. There was no person more proud of his Packers as they went to back-to-back Super Bowls than was Mr. Thompson. In fact, Mr. Push-ups was so excited when he was asked to formally read the official state resolution recognizing the Packers as the greatest organization in the greatest state with the greatest fans … well, you get the idea.

Obama works to hold Wisconsin standing

Boston Globe   Sun, Sept 23 2012

…devoting considerable time to raising campaign cash to bankroll the deluge of ads already saturating hotly contested states. Baseball great Hank Aaron was supplying the star power at two Obama fundraisers in Milwaukee while Romney headed to San Diego and Los Angeles to tap into West Coast cash, if not votes.

Green Bay Packers vs Seattle Seahawks

September 24, 2012 Replacement Refs Blown Call 

Obama: NFL refs’ return is ‘great day for America’

Yahoo News   Thurs, Sept 27 2012

President Barack Obama warmly welcomed the breakthrough deal that will see the NFL’s regular refs return to work. Their temporary replacements angered and baffled football fans coast-to-coast with controversial calls. Obama thinks “it’s a great day for America,” White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters aboard Air Force One, as the president headed to Virginia to campaign.

Barack Obama voices replacement ref displeasure   Tues, Sept 25 2012

…a very important voice has weighed in. TWEET:  Barack Obama @BarackObama NFL fans on both sides of the aisle hope the refs’ lockout is settled soon. –bo 25 Sep 12

The “-bo” at the end of the tweet means the message was posted by President Barack Obama himself. This isn’t the first time Obama has weighed in on the performance of the replacement officials and the ongoing labor dispute between the NFL and its usual referees. In an interview with WTAM-AM in Cleveland last week, Obama asked his interviewer: “But one thing I got to say, though, is it just me or do we have to get our regular refs back?” However, despite his standing as the leader of the nation, Obama seems to be as powerless as the average fan, telling WTAM: “I can’t get involved in it, but I’m just expressing my point of view as a sports fan.”

Romney wants ‘to see some experiences referees’

The Hill (blog)   Tues, Sept 25 2012

Mitt Romney echoed running mate Paul Ryan on a controversial call by National Football League referees that decided the Green Bay Packers/Seattle Seahawks game on Monday. 

”I’d sure like to see some experienced referees, some with NFL experience, come back out to the NFL playing fields,” Romney said Tuesday evening in an interview with CNN.

Paul Ryan On NFL Ref Lockout: ‘Time To Get The Real Refs’

Hufington Post   Tues, Sept 25 2012

…virtually everyone else, including a surprising number of Republican lawmakers, he’s siding with the union on this one, albeit without formally endorsing its demands. In a campaign stop outside of Cincinnati on Tuesday, Ryan immediately voiced his displeasure over the football game the night before, in which his home-state Green Bay Packers lost the game on the last play via a botched call. “You guys watch that Packers game last night?” Ryan asked an audience inside the factory warehouse at Byer Steel. “I mean, give me a break! It is time to get the real refs. And you know what it reminds me of? President Obama and the economy. If you can’t get it right, it is time to get out.”

Union-busting Wis. governor calls for return of NFL’s union refs after call seals Packers Loss

Washington Post   Tues, Sept 25 2012

MADISON, Wis. — Nothing brings political enemies together in Wisconsin like the Green Bay Packers. Following a controversial game-ending call by replacement referees that cost Green Bay a win over the Seattle Seahawks on Monday Night Football, Wisconsin officials from across the political divide united behind the Packers. Even Gov. Scott Walker and a Democratic state senator who were bitter opponents in the 2011 battle over Wisconsin public workers’ collective bargaining rights found themselves on the same side Tuesday. Walker, whose union-busting efforts have made him the darling of fiscal conservatives, posted a message on Twitter calling for the return of the NFL’s locked-out unionized officials. “After catching a few hours of sleep, the (hash)Packers game is still just as painful. (hash)Returntherealrefs,” Walker tweeted early Tuesday.

Roger Goodell Phone Number Tweeted By Wisconsin Senator Jon Erpenbach After Packers Loss

Huffington Post   Tues, Sept 25 2012

NEW YORK — One politician let his feelings be known after the wild ending of the Seattle Seahawks’ 14-12 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Monday night. Wisconsin State Senator Jon Erpenbach tweeted NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s office phone number after the replacement officials mishandled the final play of the game. Seattle’s Golden Tate pushed one Green Bay defender out of the way then wrestled another for the ball and was awarded a disputed touchdown on the final play. Erpenbach said in a separate tweet that if Monday night’s ending did not spark an end to the lockout of the regular officials “this season will be a joke.”

Gingrich Compares Obama to NFL Replacement Refs

AllMediaNY   Wed, Sept 26 2012

In a series of charged comments towards the Commander-in-Chief yesterday, Former House Speaker and GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich called President Barack Obama a “part-time president,” and compared him to the NFL’s much-maligned replacement officials. “He really is like the substitute referees in the sense that he’s not a real president. He doesn’t do anything that presidents do, he doesn’t worry about any of the things the presidents do,” Gingrich said during an appearance on Fox News’s On the Record with Greta Van Susteren

NJ’s US senators weigh in on NHL lockout

Wall Street Journal   Mon, Oct 1 2012

NEWARK, N.J. — New Jersey’s senators are urging both sides in the NHL lockout to consider the economic impact on their state if the dispute is not resolved. U.S. Sens. Robert Menendez and Frank Lautenberg sent a letter Monday to the commissioner of the National Hockey League and the director of the NHL Players’ Association urging them to reach a settlement. The Democrats write that Congress has jurisdiction over interstate commerce, which includes professional sports, and will be keeping a “close eye” on negotiations. The letter warns that the absence of New Jersey Devils’ games in Newark could mean millions of dollars in lost economic activity and jobs in especially tough economic times. The Devils advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals last season, creating a financial boost to the city just five months ago.

June 11, 2012 Headlines: Kings win first Stanley Cup, Baller in Chief has no NBA finals prediction, ‘n’ an NBA return to Seattle?

LA Kings win their first Stanley Cup

LA King win first Stanley Cup, Dave Sandford:NHLI:Getty Images

beat New Jersey Devils 6-1 in Game 6 of the finals

Obama passes up chance to predict Finals winner

 Sports Illustrated Mon, 11 Jun 2012 17:19 PM PDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Politically speaking, you’d think President Barack Obama would have a free pass to pick a winner in the NBA championship. The game pits the Oklahoma City Thunder from solidly Republican Oklahoma against the Miami Heat, in the crucial swing state of Florida. Asked by a television reporter from Reno, Nev., to predict a winner on Monday Obama demurred. Obama, an avid basketball fan, said, quoting: “Both teams look terrific and I am looking forward to a good series. Hopefully, it will go to seven games. But I can’t make a prediction right now. They both look pretty tough.”

Seattle mayor meets with NBA head in New York

KOMO Seattle Mon, 11 Jun 2012 16:10 PM PDT

SEATTLE (AP) – Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn has delivered a personal message to NBA Commissioner David Stern, saying the city is interested in having the league come back. McGinn’s spokesman Aaron Pickus said McGinn met with Stern in New York on Monday. A new ownership group took the Seattle Sonics to Oklahoma City in 2008. Now playing as the Thunder, Oklahoma City faces the Miami Heat when the NBA finals begin Tuesday. A hedge-fund manager has proposed building a nearly $500 million arena south of Safeco and CenturyLink fields in Seattle. The amount of public support would be $200 million if an NBA and NHL franchise moved to Seattle. McGinn backs the plan, but some business interests worry traffic would impede commerce in the city’s industrial area. The City Council and King County Council are scrutinizing the proposal.

Governor tours improvements at Kentucky Speedway

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear (C) at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Ky., to Speedway Motorsports CEO Bruton Smith, left, and speedway general manager Mark Simendinger, right, Monday, June 11, 2012. (AP Photo:Garry Jones)

Associated Press via Yahoo! Finance Mon, 11 Jun 2012 12:04 PM PDT

SPARTA, Ky. (AP) — Gov. Steve Beshear toured the Kentucky Motor Speedway on Monday to view new infrastructure improvements designed to ease traffic problems that marred the track’s debut race of NASCAR’s top series last year. The state contracted $3.7 million for road improvements to expand Kentucky 35 and Interstate 71, and Speedway general manager Mark Simendinger estimates the track has spent $8 million to $10 million focused on parking an additional 15,000 to 20,000 vehicles. The track’s signature event, the Quaker State 400, is set for June 30.

David Diehl may be a good guy, but he made a very big mistake. (Getty Images)

Giants’ OL David Diehl is the latest NFL DUI case

Shutdown Corner Mon, 11 Jun 2012 08:58 AM PDT

Just two days after he met with President Obama at the White House as part of the New York Giants‘ Super Bowl coronation, and just a few hours after he was watching Croatian soccer and attending a charity event at Westchester Country Club, Giants offensive lineman David Diehl was charged with driving while intoxicated after he hit two parked cars in Queens.

May 30, 2012 Headlines: Chavez courts Obama, Booker’s beef, ‘n’ most annoying “first lady” hobby

Hugo Chavez jokes about teaming up with Barack Obama over Baseball

Daily TelegraphWed, 30 May 2012 02:01 AM PDT

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez

Hugo Chavez jokingly raised the possibility of teaming up with Barack Obama to lobby for baseball at the Olympics…Chavez said, “Let’s go Obama, together. Alliances can be made, Fidel, Raul, Obama and Chavez to fight for baseball and softball”. Relations have been tense for years between Chavez and the US government, with American officials criticising Venezuela’s rights record as well as its counter-drug efforts.

Putin’s Olympics snub welcomed

Russian President Vladimir Putin will not be coming to the London Olympics

Sky News Australia Wed, 30 May 2012 12:43 PM PDT

Russian President Vladimir Putin will not be coming to the London Olympics. British MPs, who have campaigned against human rights abuses in Russia, immediately welcomed the snub. Former Europe minister Denis MacShane claimed it was a way for the newly-sworn president to avoid pressure on Syria. He said: ‘Putin now realises that he is not welcome in London because of Russia’s flagrant rejection of European values and norms and failure to investigate and punish officials who violate rule of law.’

A New Jersey Devils Stanley Cup Win Would Be Very Awkward For Newark Mayor, Cory Booker

ForbesWed, 30 May 2012 04:30 AM PDT

Newark Mayor Cory Booker

Mayor, Cory Booker, has had an interesting last two months. During that span, he has rescued a woman from a house fire and very publicly chastised President Obama-a fellow Democrat and supposed friend-for attacking Mitt Romney’s affiliation with private equity. But there was one other Booker moment that slipped under the radar screen…

In April, Booker started a public feud with Jeff Vanderbeek, the former Lehman Brothers executive who bought the New Jersey Devils in 2004. Six years ago, Vanderbeek moved the Devils to Newark, paying $185 million of the eventual $375 million bill to build a brand new arena, the Prudential Center, in the city’s downtown area.

Booker’s beef was over a recent arbitration ruling about the revenue sharing between the team and the city that left Newark with a $600,000 bill. Booker accused the Devils of not living up to their obligation to financially support youth programs in the city. Booker called Vanderbeek a “high-class, high-falutin’ huckster and hustler” and “one of the most despicable owners” in the National Hockey League.

Golden State Warriors want to move back to San Francisco

National Post Wed, 30 May 2012 03:32 AM PDT

SAN FRANCISCO — The Golden State Warriors are ready to announce what many have long suspected: The franchise wants to move back to San Francisco. The NBA team, Commissioner David Stern and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee scheduled a news conference at 10 a.m. local time Tuesday to announce the decision to leave Oakland. The earliest the team could move would be 2017, when it can escape its lease at Oracle Arena. The Warriors will unveil plans to build an arena at Piers 30-32. The waterfront site near the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge – one of the most beautiful views in one of the world’s most beautiful cities – is just blocks from the Giants’ ballpark and the downtown financial district.

Jaguars ‘perplexed’ by city’s claim of lease default

WJXT Jacksonville Wed, 30 May 2012 14:42 PM PDT

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Not long after Jaguars’ owner Shahid Khan said he was “shocked and perplexed” by the city’s claim that the NFL team has defaulted on its stadium contract, the city withdrew its claim and its top lawyer apologized. Late Wednesday Brown wrote a definitive response: “Let me be crystal clear: the City of Jacksonville has absolutely no intention whatsoever of terminating its lease with the Jacksonville Jaguars.”

Pro Bowl returns to Hawaii in 2013

KITV Honolulu Wed, 30 May 2012 13:06 PM PDT

Nearly a year after Gov. Neil Abercrombie equated a $4 million fee to keep the NFL Pro Bowl in Hawaii as a “bribe”, the governor has changed his tune. On Wednesday, the league announced a new agreement that brings the game back to Aloha Stadium in 2013, and the governor couldn’t be happier. “This is wonderful news for football fans in Hawaii and elsewhere who love watching the game …

Arbitrator rules against Redskins

The Washington Redskins stretch during an organized team activity on Monday in Ashburn, Va. (AP Photo:Evan Vucci)

Washington Examiner Wed, 30 May 2012 04:12 AM PDT

The Redskins and Cowboys, unusual allies, lost their fight to recoup a combined $46 million of cap space when arbitrator Stephen Burbank dismissed their grievance against the NFL it was announced Tuesday at the owners meetings in Atlanta by NFL executive vice president and general counsel Jeff Pash. The Redskins and Cowboys issued a joint statement Tuesday afternoon that closes the matter: “We pursued our salary cap claim pursuant to the CBA and we respect and will abide by the arbitrator’s decision to dismiss. We will contiue to focus on our football teams and the 2012 season.”

Gov. Corbett signs bill to protect student athletes from sudden death Wed, 30 May 2012 09:10 AM PDT

Gov. Corbett signed into law this morning a bill designed to protect student athletes with undetected heart conditions from sudden death while playing sports. House Bill 1610, the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act, became the law…”Being sidelined for a game is better than being lost forever,” said Corbett. “This is a law of prevention, born out of a painful loss and a spirit of generosity from these families who have seen bearing their own sorrow and found hope for others.”

 Syria vows 9 qualifiers will compete in London

ESPN Wed, 30 May 2012 06:01 AM PDT

The president of the Syrian Olympic Committee says nine athletes from the war-torn country have qualified for the London Olympics and will compete “despite all pressures, media war and threats to ban them.”

Ann Romney vs. Michelle Obama: Who Has the Most Obnoxious Hobby?

The Atlantic WireWed, 30 May 2012 12:00 PM PDT

Michelle Obama and Ann Romney. Amazon; YouTube

For years conservatives have tried to turn Michelle Obama’s extracurricular obsessions — organic gardening, healthy eating, exercising — into a political symbol. But her husband’s up for re-election, which means there’s a First Lady in waiting, Ann Romney, who has her own hobbies, like the expensive horse riding sport called dressage. Obama’s new book American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America is certain to provide more material for jokes. But the wife of the Republican presidential nominee is giving her some competition in this arena. Let’s explore: Does the current First Lady or the aspiring one have the more annoying hobby?