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Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Published: Mar 25, 2006 There is much concern about the status of the New Orleans Saints franchise. Having worked on Gov. John McKeithen’s staff to try to help obtain the franchise, I’d like to point up some facts for thought. ...

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Old 03-26-2006, 07:49 AM   #1
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Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

Published: Mar 25, 2006


There is much concern about the status of the New Orleans Saints franchise. Having worked on Gov. John McKeithen’s staff to try to help obtain the franchise, I’d like to point up some facts for thought.

Gov. McKeithen and U.S. Sen. Russell Long, D-La., (and others) convinced Commissioner Pete Rozelle to grant Louisiana a National Football League franchise to be domiciled in New Orleans.

John Mecom Jr. (and minor owners) paid the league $6 million for the franchise. Mr. Tom Benson acquired it from Mecom in 1985 for $70 million.

During his ownership, Mr. Benson has wrangled the state and city for money and took over the Superdome for his personal profit. He never offered to repay nor allow the state credit for the political and economic capital required to obtain and enable the franchise and the Superdome. He could have never obtained the franchise from the league through his own efforts for any amount of money.

Mr. Benson intentionally maintained a mediocre team as he always planned to move to San Antonio. He refuses to pay market value money to retain quality players whose contracts are up for renegotiation. As free agents, they are instant starters for other teams.

Forbes Magazine recently published an article valuing the 32 NFL franchises. The Saints were 22nd most valuable. Forbes estimated the Saints at $718 million, plus annual net profits of about $15 million.

Having paid $70 million for the franchise, Mr. Benson has an unrealized profit of $642 million plus. I do not feel sorry for Mr. Benson.

The NFL as we know it today was created by merger of the old American Football League and National Football League, allowed through an enabling exemption by the U.S. Congress from the Sherman Anti-Trust Act. This act allowed the commissioner and franchise owners to become the czars of professional football. Gov. McKeithen, Sen. Long (majority whip of the U.S. Senate), Congressman Hale Boggs (majority leader of the U.S. House of Representatives), Mayor Victor Schiro (New Orleans) and others were at the heart and soul of this political battle, the key to obtaining our franchise.

I believe the best way to protect the Saints from Mr. Benson is to seek legislation in Congress to revoke the league’s anti-trust exemption in that part applicable to an owner moving a franchise.

Legislation to revoke the exemption, in part, would limit the monopoly by the commissioner and owners over moving professional football teams, and provide the public some oversight and discipline in future decisions by franchise owners.

The people of Louisiana, through their political capital and economic sacrifice, obtained the Saints franchise specifically for this market area, and it belongs and should remain here. Mr. Benson should repay the state, out of his $642 million unrealized profit, for its efforts to obtain the franchise.

Theodore “Tedâ⠬? L. Jones
lawyer
Baton Rouge

http://www.2theadvocate.com/opinion/...s/2522021.html
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Old 03-26-2006, 08:55 AM   #2
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RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

Theodore “Tedâ⠬? L. Jones, you are my hero. That was good read.
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:09 AM   #3
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Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

Originally Posted by papz
Theodore “Tedâ⠬? L. Jones, you are my hero. That was good read.
Ditto.
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:20 AM   #4
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

Is his partner Bill S. Preston, esquire? And together they are WYLD STALLYONS!!!
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:33 AM   #5
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

That was a most excellent guess D!
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Old 03-26-2006, 02:15 PM   #6
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

I was wondering who would catch the "Bill and Ted" reference...LOL Way to be on your toes, Cher
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Old 03-26-2006, 03:01 PM   #7
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

does this mean we might have a shot at getting "bob" genghis kahn to play LB for us?
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Old 03-26-2006, 03:04 PM   #8
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

And Frood (Frued) can play qb. And So-crates would coach.
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Old 03-26-2006, 06:28 PM   #9
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

i am sorry to do my normal disagreement but i have to. first the people don't own what only mr.benson owns. you could argue that they own the right to the name but mr.benson owns the team. he has every right to move it if he wants and can through the nfl. there are other companies and corps getting money from city and state governments in other states to open up there. does that mean because they were given money to move there that now they should be regulated by the government to stay there? i am sorry but if we allow the government to start dictating what privately owned buisness can do then you are moving towards communism. the government has enough trouble operating themselves i don't want them owning anything else in this country

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Old 03-26-2006, 07:14 PM   #10
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RE: Re: RE: Letter: How to protect Saints from Benson

COOL!!!!!!!!!!!
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