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Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) tried to joke about Democratic support of a 70 percent tax rate for wealthy Americans by using the NFL as a hypothetical, but as many people quickly pointed out, his joke doesn’t take into account how the sport works.
Crenshaw, a veteran and newcomer to Congress who entered the national spotlight after accepting the apology of a Saturday Night Live actor who mocked him last year, asked his Twitter followers if the New England Patriots—who won last night’s Super Bowl—should be levied a “70% tax” so that “NFL competition is more fair and equal?”
“Should someone propose a 70% tax on the Patriots so that NFL competition is more fair and equal? Asking for a friend,” Crenshaw wrote on Twitter.
Should someone propose a 70% tax on the Patriots so that NFL competition is more fair and equal? Asking for a friend.— Dan Crenshaw (@DanCrenshawTX) February 4, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez even fired back at her fellow lawmaker.
“The average NFL salary is $2.1 million, so most players would never experience a 70% rate. The owners who refuse to hire Kaepernick would, though,” she wrote.
The average NFL salary is $2.1 million, so most players would never experience a 70% rate.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 4, 2019
The owners who refuse to hire Kaepernick would, though. https://t.co/AnST2lCiU9
Ocasio-Cortez wasn’t the only one with a response.
Many people pointed out to the Texas lawmaker that the Patriots are subject to a number of factors that, are for Crenshaw’s joke’s purposes, essentially a tax on their historic success.
The NFL has a salary cap for all of its teams, revenue sharing, and the team that wins the Super Bowl, like the Patriots, are given the last pick in the next NFL draft—allowing teams that are less successful the ability to (hypothetically) choose better young talent to try and rebuild their teams.
The NFL has revenue sharing, a salary cap (and team spending floors), and a player entry draft designed to reward the weakest teams. That's socialism, not capitalism. https://t.co/Hfz0Dt9Lvj— Adam Bonin (@adambonin) February 4, 2019
This is the guy who is supposed to get millennials and Gen Z back into conservatism? The dude who can't even figure out how the NFL's regulated cartel system works? https://t.co/IOupSxxkF2— Nathan Bernhardt (@jonbernhardt) February 4, 2019
The Patriots:— Tyler Conway (@jtylerconway) February 4, 2019
- get the last pick in every round of the draft
- play division winners in non-common games next season (their schedule is hardest in AFC East)
- share revenue equally with 31 other teams
- play under a salary cap that limits how much they can pay to retain players https://t.co/VkUFNIPZJG
This is in fact precisely how the NFL operates: revenue sharing, salary caps, and the winners get bad draft picks next year. What's astounding about the Patriots' success is that they've done it in spite of that. https://t.co/axGzm5lQoF— Nick's Tacky Handle (@nicktachy) February 4, 2019
Someone should learn about how the NFL has a system that attempts to distribute assets equally across all their teams in order to mitigate the gap between the top teams and the bottom teams. #STFU https://t.co/yNsuhDlIPl— Cubes Fan (@CubX3) February 4, 2019
Let's see: the NFL has revenue sharing, a salary cap, and reverse order of entry into their draft for teams that are worse off than others. Seems to be going well. Guess we'll have to take your advice and move that socialism over to our government. https://t.co/pVDpzFvQcP— B. 🥌 (@knicks148) February 4, 2019
Salary caps? Draft picks? Revenue sharing? Do these people care about knowledge at all? I don't even watch NFL anymore and know that they have systems in place to ensure a more competitive league structure. Daft Pol. https://t.co/tv4hLuroqo— 🤖 brusalan music 🤖 (@satumma) February 4, 2019
And yet, with these socialist policies, success is still possible, an argument conservatives think is true.
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).