New York (Geek News Services)
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell reacted swiftly and sharply to the revelation that the Bush Administration had illegally spied on American citizens by fining President Bush $500,000 and the Republican National Committee an additional $250,000.
In addition, the Republican Party will lose one large segment of swing voters if they make the playoffs this year, and a medium sized and small segement of swing voters if they don't make the playoffs.
Goodell commented on the Bush administration's willful disregard of the both the Constitution and the FISA statute:
"This episode represents a calculated and deliberate attempt to avoid longstanding rules designed to encourage fair play and promote honest competition on the playing field," Goodell wrote.
As for the fine for the RNC,
the NFL statement said Goodell believed RNC head Mel Martinez was unaware of Bush's actions. But the commissioner penalized the party because of Bush's "substantial control over all aspects of the Republicans' operations."
"His actions and decisions are properly attributed to the party," Goodell said.
Bush appeared contrite:
In a statement issued two hours after the punishment was announced, Bush said he misinterpreted the nation's rules but acknowledged that "part of my job as head coach of the national security team is to ensure that our espionage operations are conducted in compliance of the league rules and all accepted interpretations of them."
"I accept full responsibility for the actions that led to tonight's ruling," the statement said. "Once again, I apologize to the Republican party and every person directly or indirectly associated with the United States of America for the embarrassment, distraction and penalty my mistake caused. I also apologize to Republican voters and would like to thank them for their support during the past few days and throughout my career."
The NFL explicitly rejected suggestions from Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) that Bush merely be censured for breaking the law of the land. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid were too busy using a hair dryer on their powder.