Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, said Wednesday that while some may be offended by the Washington Redskins’ team name, the final decision on keeping or changing it should be left to owner Dan Snyder, not politicians.
“The decision is up to the owner to make,” Mr. Rubio said during an interview on ESPN’s Capital Games podcast.
“I’m not a game-show contestant; I’m a U.S. senator,” Mr. Rubio said. “In no way should [Mr. Snyder] be forced to change it.”
“I think he should take into account that there are people that are offended by it. I know there are others who feel strongly about what the name means and don’t see offense to it. He’s in the PR business; he has to sell tickets. And ultimately he’s going to face accountability from a business perspective for whatever choice he makes,” Mr. Rubio said.
Some lawmakers on Capitol Hill, led by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, have been outspoken in demanding a name change. Mr. Reid has announced he won’t attend the team’s games until they change the name.
A new poll released Tuesday by Langer Research for ESPN found that 71 percent of Americans favor keeping the Redskins nickname.