Money + Athletes = Suckers

August 26, 2008 – 2:47 pm by Matthew Glenesk

Here at Rumors and Rants, we try to stay above the political fray. We do this for a few reasons: 1. We don’t want to alienate any readers because their warped views are drastically different than our own, and 2. Most of us are too damn uninformed to have a viewpoint we can defend properly in the first place .

But when politics and sports collide? Now that’s a topic we’ll happily tackle.

And no, I’m not talking about Steve Largent, J.C. Watts, Jack Kemp, Jim Bunning or Gerald Ford. There’s something much more tantalizing. Like what these former and current sports luminaries spend their money on. But maybe, more importantly, who they are giving it to.

A friend of mine came across this Web site and I thought y’all would enjoy a gander at it as well. Elections, like sports, are big business. So, naturally the two are bound to meet. The linked site shows how much those in sports have given to political campaigns in the past 30 years and who they gave it to. You can click on each individual to find further on details, such as Arnold Palmer’s $1,000 donation to the Aircraft Owners and Pilots PAC.

I’ve taken the liberty of scanning the list for you and offer some of my own observations:

The Republicans have all the good quarterbacks
Troy Aikman ($10,300), John Elway ($24,300), Boomer Esiason ($2,300), Jim Kelly ($4,000), Bernie Kosar ($72,800), Peyton Manning ($8,500), Dan Marino ($9,500), Roger Staubach ($145,712), Bart Starr (34,170), Fran Tarkenton (9,300) and Steve Young ($1,000).

The Democrats should run the ball
The most notable Democratic quarterback donor? How about Joe Theismann. Yes, the same man who gave us this nugget of wisdom: “Nobody in football should be called a genius. A genius is a guy like Norman Einstein.” Fittingly, Theismann helped pen “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Football.”

Al Davis would rather give mystery lineman money than politicians
You’d think someone who wants to “Just win baby,” would delve into the political campaign business by backing a horse in the race. Instead, Davis has given just $19,000 in the past 30 years. But in a way that makes sense. He was saving his money to splash on a defensive tackle most NFL fans had never heard of. That being the $50.5 million man Tommy Kelly. He of the nine career sacks.

From the “No Shit Sherlock” department
NASCAR is a cash cow for the GOP. Of the 16 listed NASCAR drivers/owners/officials all 16 donated their funds to the Republican party, led by former chairman Bill France Jr. ($144,964) and current chairman Brian France ($105,800).

David Stern makes too much money
The NBA commissioner has donated a staggering $1,013,560 (mostly to the democrats), far exceeding the political contributions of other commissioners. Bud Selig has thrown $88,850 to the Democrat’s cause, while former NFL commish Paul Tagliabue donated $32,749. Current NFL honcho Roger Goodell has passed the GOP along $15,300. But then there’s Gary Bettman and his loose purse strings. Bettman has donated just $2,000 leaving one to question whether he’s Canadian (he’s not; he’s from Queens, NY).

I didn’t know Lute Olsen’s real name was Robert
Wasn’t his first wife’s name Bobbi? That must have made for some interesting pillow talk. Anyway, “Robert” has donated a stout $104,955, all to the Republicans.

Speaking of pillow talk
Phil Jackson and Jeanie Buss don’t seem to see eye-to-eye when it comes to politics. He’s given nearly $8,000 to the Democratic cause, while she’s spent $5,000 on GOP campaigns. They say a little disagreement is good in a relationship. And if not, then it’s time for that Zen-like intervention.

Tony La Russa has better uses for his money

The St. Louis Cardinals manager broke the bank with his $500 contribution. He’s undoubtedly saving his earnings for drinks and cab fare. Riiiiiiight.

Barack Obama has converted Don King
In all, King has contributed $262,800 to political campaigns, much of it to the Republican party. But the junior senator from Illinois must have inspired The Hair. After donating $30,000 in 2007 to the Republican National Committee, King put $4,600 into the Obama For America account. Has Don King gone Don-key? Only in America!

If you’re a Republican running for office give Alex Spanos a call
The San Diego Chargers owner tops the list with contributions of of $6,741,260. Nearly $5 million of that went to 527 groups that supported George W. Bush’s campaign in 2004 ranking him among the top five GOP donors in the country.

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  1. 6 Responses to “Money + Athletes = Suckers”

  2. “And no, I’m not talking about Steve Largent, J.C. Watts, Jack Kemp, Jim Bunting or Gerald Ford.”

    You google searched ‘athletes who are politicians’ didn’t you?

    By Jersey on Aug 26, 2008

  3. Nope, those were just the first ones that came to mind.

    By The Baker on Aug 26, 2008

  4. Two Bernie Kosar references in two days on Rumors and Rants? We have to keep this streak alive.

    By Hick Flick on Aug 26, 2008

  5. I don’t understand how you could overlook Heath Shuler.

    By Andrew on Aug 26, 2008

  6. I’ll bet the Libertarians have all the wrestlers and poker players.

    By MahSoonerz on Aug 27, 2008

  7. I know some wow gold in wow.

    By wow gold on Oct 20, 2008

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