GOP lobbyist releases text of bill to prohibit openly gay players in the NFL

WASHINGTON — The Republican lobbyist behind the campaign to ban Michael Sam and any other openly gay football player from joining the NFL, released the text of his proposed federal legislation on Thursday.

Michael Sam
Michael Sam

The bill, titled “The American Decency Act of 2014,” ia authored by D.C. lobbyist Jack Burkman, and would make it illegal for “self-declared homosexual football players” to join an NFL team unless it “provides facilities for homosexual players which are entirely separate and distinct from the facilities used by heterosexual players.”

Violators would face a fine between $3 million and $8 million.

Burkman says “We are losing our decency as a nation” be allowing openly gay players like Sam to participate in the NFL. “If the NFL has no morals and no values, then Congress must find values for it,” he said.

Burkman claims to have the support of at least six members of the U.S. House and one U.S. Senator, but refuses to name them, and none have come forward publicly to announce their support.

Text of the bill is as follows:

RESOLVED by the U.S. House of Representatives of the United States of America, that the following article is proposed as federal law under the jurisdiction of the United States of America, enforceable by Executive action.

BE it enacted by the House of Representatives and by the Senate of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that:

Section 1. The National Football League and all teams thereof are hereby prohibited from employing self-declared homosexual football players. This prohibition shall only apply in cases where a football player has openly declared himself to be a homosexual.

Section 2. The prohibition detailed in article (A) above shall not apply to any team of the National Football League that provides facilities for homosexual players which are entirely separate and distinct from the facilities used by heterosexual players.

Section 3. Provisions (A) and (B) above shall pre-empt all relevant state law.

Section 4. The US Department of Justice shall have the power to enforce this legislation by all appropriate means.

Section 5. Should one part of this legislation be deemed at any point unconstitutional, all other parts shall be considered separate and entirely severable for Federal Constitutional purposes.

Section 6. Each violation of (A) and (B) above shall result in a fine of not less than $3 million not more than $8 million.

Political observers say the measure has no chance of ever passing, or that doing so is even within Congress’ authority.

Burkman’s openly gay brother said he thought the entire campaign is nothing more than a publicity stunt.

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