New York GOP lawmaker lashes out at Jets owner for offering to pay fine for kneeling players

New York GOP lawmaker lashes out at Jets owner for offering to pay fine for kneeling players
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Rep. Pete KingPeter (Pete) Thomas KingThe Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by United Against Nuclear Iran — Kavanaugh, accuser say they’re prepared to testify On The Money: Broad coalition unites against Trump tariffs | Senate confirms new IRS chief | Median household income rose for third straight year in 2017 | Jamie Dimon's brief battle with Trump Blue-state Republicans say they will vote against 'tax cuts 2.0' if it extends SALT cap MORE (R-N.Y.) lashed out at New York Jets chairman and acting owner Christopher Johnson for saying he would pay fines for players who continued to kneel during the national anthem despite the NFL's new ban on such protests.

In a tweet, King called Johnson’s move “disgraceful” and declared that it was “time to say goodbye” to the Jets.

“Disgraceful that @nyjets owner will pay fines for players who kneel for National Anthem,” King tweeted. “Encouraging a movement premised on lies vs. police. Would he support all player protests? Would he pay fines of players giving Nazi salutes or spew racism? It’s time to say goodbye to Jets!”

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Johnson said Wednesday that he would pay the fines for players who protest during the anthem. The NFL’s new policy, announced Wednesday, states that players must “stand and show respect” for the national anthem, and that teams can be fined if players continue to kneel on the field. Teams have the option of remaining in their locker rooms under the new policy.

Many current and former NFL players have harshly criticized the ban, saying that it infringes on players’ First Amendment rights, and that team owners did not consult with players before passing it.

The ban comes after a season of attacks from President TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Trump sells U.N. reorganizing and Kavanaugh allegations dominate Ex-Trump staffer out at CNN amid “false and defamatory accusations” Democrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her MORE and other conservatives on the league in response to players kneeling during the anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality.

Johnson’s brother, Woody Johnson, owns the Jets team and has been on leave since President Trump tapped him as the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom.