- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 2, 2022

The White House said Wednesday that it will not intervene to end the Major League Baseball lockout, adding that it is up to the owners and players to reach an agreement.

Principal deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre called the situation a private dispute that does not require government assistance.

“The Major League Baseball negotiations are for the players, the league and the owners,” she said. “Baseball fans may have some opinions as well. We will leave that to them.”

“The best role for the government is to encourage the parties to commit themselves fully to collective bargaining that reaches an agreement and that is how we feel here,” Jean-Pierre continued.

Jean-Pierre’s comments come one day after Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred announced that he has canceled Opening Day and the first two series of the 2022 season, the first time games have been lost to a labor dispute since 1995.

Both sides remain far apart after a flurry of negotiations, spanning 20 hours between Monday and Tuesday, broke down.

Former President Clinton got involved in the 1994-95 baseball strike. In February 1995, Clinton summoned both players and owners to the White House to reach an agreement.

The president spent roughly three hours pushing the owners and players to an agreement, but ultimately the talks fell through. Clinton was widely credited with creating the momentum for an agreement, which was reached a few weeks later.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly characterized the dispute between the baseball owners and players.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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