Limbaugh’s Dismissal Was Leverage In NFLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement

Rush_Limbaugh_at_CPAC_(2009)In this morning’s opening of The Rush Limbaugh Show, host Rush Limbaugh termed his firing from the ownership group hoping to purchase the NFL’s St. Louis Rams as a “sad day, more for the country than for myself.”

Limbaugh called himself the “mirror of what America is becoming” in response to the racially and politically-charged move he claims was behind his ouster from the exclusive gentry of NFL ownership.

To begin today’s radio program, Limbaugh provided background to this episode, saying he met Dave Checketts last spring on the Trump-owned golf course in West Palm Beach (Checketts was leading the group to buy the Rams). Checketts, Limbaugh claimed, had heard of the broadcaster’s desire to be part of the Rams’ ownership.

Then, sometime in late May or early June, Limbaugh hosted Checketts at his house to learn more about his plans for purchasing the team. Anticipating the public firestorm over Limbaugh’s potential involvement, Checketts assured Limbaugh he had “cleared this at the highest level of the NFL.” Limbaugh now berates himself for not clarifying who was the NFL source (presumably Commissioner Goodell), but took Checkett’s word that it was “all handled,” and that Checketts was fully prepared for “what was going to happen.”

Apparently not.

When word leaked out that last week that Limbaugh was being considered for the ownership stake in the Rams, the firestorm erupted as predicted. Limbaugh derides African American leaders Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton for their immediate opposition. More recently, Indianapolis Colts’ owner Jim Irsay weighed in, saying he, too, would also oppose any prospective group that included the famous talk show host.

But Limbaugh says the roof collapsed when the newly elected executive director of the National Football League became involved. This past spring, DeMaurice Smith was selected as NFLPA executive director, replacing the late Gene Upshaw. The 45-year-old Smith, considered a surprise choice since he had no experience in professional sports, was thought to be the right person to guide the players into what ESPN’s John Clayton called “a critical era that includes negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement in the shadow of an economic meltdown.”

How does Smith factor in to the decision to drop Limbaugh from the NFL ownership elite? According to Limbaugh, Smith has already “threatened to bring the Obama White House into this (upcoming bargaining agreement).” He said black leaders pressured the NFLPA (and therefore its leader, Smith) in using this recent episode as “leverage in negotiations” with the NFL owners on the upcoming collective bargaining agreement. “That threat is being bandied about,” Limbaugh claimed.

Tuesday evening, Checketts phoned Limbaugh to inform him the group was dropping Rush from the prospective Rams’ ownership group. Limbaugh refused to withdraw, telling Checketts “…you’ll have to fire me.” Checketts issued a statement to that affect yesterday. Limbaugh learned of it when he got off a plane in St. Louis en route to a family function in Cape Girardeau, Missouri last night.

Limbaugh called his “termination” from the Rams’ group crucial for the NFL since the league, he says, can expect what has happened to Wall Street and the automotive business: government intervention.

“They’re trying to make me the poster boy here…it’s designed to intimidate and frighten the (NFL) owners. It’s the warning shot across the bow: ‘Get ready for next bargaining agreement.’”

Limbaugh decried the “blind hatred” aimed at him, but offered, “I’ll still love pro football and remain the biggest, non-paid promoter of the sport.”

Rick Cabral is a Sacramento-based freelance writer and a baseball historian, who has written extensively about the 1927 Bustin’ Babes-Larrupin Lous barnstorming tour featuring the New York Yankees’ Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.

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4 Responses for “Limbaugh’s Dismissal Was Leverage In NFLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement”

  1. Jesse Hemingway says:

    Why would anyone that has the means to get hookers any where in the world; why would Rush Limbaugh go to the Dominican Republic to have sex with? Seeing that Haiti and the Dominican Republic are on the same island, one of the poorest places in the world making it a pedophile hot spot destination while many Republican Party members have a high propensity of being pedophiles. I am not saying Rush Limbaugh had sex with young black boys butt he does have a coded racism message on his radio talk show and he is a convicted untreated drug addict that is classified as a mental illness so I guess we all must come to our on conclusions.

    What a turn of events for Mr. Limbaugh as a mascot for the rich, he just is not really one of them. Mr. Limbaugh did the filthy work for the rich he bombarded the air waves convincing the less educate to follow him and just be grateful they have jobs and the rich should get every break allotted and given special treatment. Mr. Limbaugh sold his soul for success, sold out his country, and his uneducated listeners only to be shown that capitalism is a fraud the basic principle of capitalism buying and selling Mr. Limbaugh was denied. The owner of the San Diego NFL team gave Mr. Limbaugh an award as a up right descent man but Mr. Limbaugh still can not join that elite circle of NFL owners. You see Mr. Limbaugh you are just a useful idiot with a lot of money nothing more because if you were what you think you are you be allowed to buy an NFL team. LOL, LOL,LOL

  2. Tom Tacoma says:

    What an arrogant ass!

    A gentleman would have answered Checketts when told he was being dropped from the owners consortium that he was sorry to hear that, and could he possibly be reconsidered in light of what he has to offer the team (cash), or maybe join in as a silent partner. A gentleman would not have been bull-headed enough to insist on being fired.

    But Rush has to make this all about Rush. Bad publicity is good publicity.

  3. dobropet says:

    Interesting, leverage for NFLPA is what it was all about. I thought it was about Sheila Jackson Lee complaining of his offensive racial statements:

    “Ignorance is bliss, so the saying goes, and right about now there are a lot of blissfully ignorant folks prattling about, thumping their chests – characteristic of their simian ancestry save for the scratching of their underarms. I’m talking about those who are taking credit for undermining Rush Limbaugh’s enjoining a group interested in purchasing the St. Louis Rams football team.

    To hear them tell it, Rush is the devil right out of hell for daring to speak his opinion (in a free society), and often for stating the obvious. Those involved would be laughable in their complaint if they weren’t unambiguously ignorant and totally given over to a set of double standards.

    Would Rush be worse for the game than Ricky Williams or Lawrence Phillips? One is a self-described “poster child for marijuana,” the other a thug who serially beat women. Would Rush be worse for the game than the dozens and dozens of players and coaches who have been arrested (many repeatedly) for drugs, steroids, assault, murder, drunk driving and firearms offenses?

    Mercury Morris has no room to cast stones at Rush from his glass house, or does he forget his career included a 20-year prison sentence on cocaine charges – his subsequent new trial and plea-bargain arrangement that netted him three years notwithstanding?

    Rush may have spent a brief chapter of his life addicted to prescription painkillers, but I have never heard of anyone saying Rush’s entire staff and conglomerate were doing drugs. Yet, not so very long ago, I spent time in an AFC East team locker room where 40 out of 45 players were doing drugs by their own admission.”

    -Mychal Massie

  4. dobropet says:

    I respectfully disagree, it’s about white conservatism:

    “Agree with his opinions or not, Rush Limbaugh is singularly responsible for a generation of talk-format opinion and national debate. No has done more for the cause of public discourse and involvement than Rush has done. The thuggery responsible for scaring those considering the purchase of the St. Louis Rams and Rush’s participation in same have further paved the way for the downward spiral of America.

    Their capitulation and transpicuous display of cowardice based on greed has strengthened and encouraged those who would ransack the rights of an individual to buy, own and make gain. The Checketts group’s act of cowardice will further be used in the current administration’s attempt to silence the voice they fear most. Congratulation, guys – you’ve contributed to the very campaign you privately decry.

    Lest I omit the involvement of Jackson and Sharpton in the attacks against Rush – maybe they can put together a group of interested buyers. After all, they have just the kind of sordid backgrounds Roger Goodell and the league obviously find appealing – it’s white conservatism they cannot abide.”

    -Mychal Massie

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