United States Senate(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., added his voice to the growing debate surrounding NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s fate, saying that if Goodell lied about the NFL not having seen the violent video of former Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice knocking his then fiancé unconscious until TMZ posted the video Monday, then “he should go.”
“If Roger Goodell lied, as a lot of people believe he did — because the security apparatus of the NFL is so competent and experienced that for them to not have known about this tape seems incredible — he should go,” Blumenthal said Sunday on This Week.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has been under fire from critics who believe someone in the NFL must have seen the video of Rice hitting his then-fiancée, Janay Palmer.
An initial video, published on TMZ Sports in February, showed the Ravens star player dragging a seemingly unconscious Palmer out of an elevator at an Atlantic City, New Jersey, casino. A police report confirmed that there was an altercation between the two, during which Rice struck Palmer unconscious. Goodell met with Rice in July, and suspended him for two games, drawing outrage from many who thought Rice deserved harsher punishment.
A second video, posted online on Sept. 8 by TMZ Sports, shows what happened inside the elevator. Rice can be seen hitting Palmer and knocking her into a railing inside the elevator. Rice was cut by the Ravens and suspended indefinitely by the NFL shortly after the video was posted.
Blumenthal served five terms as Connecticut’s attorney general, during which time he dealt with domestic violence and abuses cases. The senator said both the NFL and Congress need to step up.
“Regardless who runs the NFL, it ought to be making a serious commitment, stronger penalties. Six-game suspension is way too lenient, and equally important, resources, funding for domestic survivor groups,” Blumenthal said. “Violence ought to be met with better services and the Congress has an obligation there too to do better and do more.”
While the video has upset many, Blumenthal said the attention surrounding the incident could be a “turning point.” The graphic caught-on-camera exchange has thrust not only the incident itself, but the larger issue of domestic violence, to the forefront of national conversation.
“Mostly this crime — it is a crime — occurs behind closed doors surrounded by stigma, shame, secrecy,” the lawmaker added.
Blumenthal said out of this violent incident “could be a real opportunity that we need to seize from Congress and from the NFL to do more.”
Read More →
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio