Roger Goodell says he has no authority to remove Daniel Snyder, owner of Washington Commanders

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says he has no authority to remove Daniel Snyder as owner of Washington Commanders, amid widespread sexual harassment allegations by the company’s workplace culture and group executives from female employees.

Guttell testified before members of Congress on Wednesday during a hearing on the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. At one point at the end of more than two hours of testimony, Guttell’s representative, Rashida Tlip (D-Michigan), raised the question.

After initially asking if he would recommend removing Snyder as the Commanders’ Owner, Triple Guttell asked, “Will you remove him?”

“Congresswoman, I have no authority to remove him,” Goodell replied.

The NFL owner can only be removed by a majority vote of one-third (24 out of 32) co-owners, although Guttell has the ability to officially recommend such a vote.

Snyder was called to testify, but declined, citing foreign business responsibilities and concerns about the process. During the trial, Carolyn Maloney (D-New York) announced that she was planning to issue a sapona to compel him to testify.

“The NFL is unwilling or unable to hold Mr. Snyder accountable,” Maloney said. “That’s why I now announce my intention to give Mr. Snyder a sapona next week. The committee will not be barred from investigating Washington’s commanders.”

Goodell told the panel that the team’s culture had changed as a result of the investigation, led by attorney Beth Wilkinson, and that Snyder was “held accountable.”

After Wilkinson presented his findings to Goodell last year, the NFL fined the team $ 10 million and Snyder withdrew from its day-to-day operations. However, the league did not release a written statement on Wilkinson’s findings, which Guttell said were intended to protect the privacy of former employees who spoke to investigators.

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Following Wednesday’s inquiries, the commanders sent a letter to the staff – a copy of which was obtained by ESPN – in part, saying, “We believe that reports in the media criticizing our organization do not accurately reflect the positive change and the current reality of the Washington Commanders organization today.”

Before the trial began on Wednesday, the panel released the findings of its eight-month investigation, which Snyder accused of conducting its own “shadow investigation” that sought to discredit former staff, hire private investigators to intimidate witnesses and use the foreign case as an excuse. Phone logs and emails.

In a 29-page memo, Snyder accused himself and other group executives of misconduct and sought to influence the commission’s investigation into the NFL by Wilkinson’s Company.

Snyder’s lawyers presented the NFL with a 100-slide PowerPoint presentation, which included “private text messages, emails, phone recordings and call transcripts and social media posts of nearly 50 people believed to be involved in the plot to defame Mr. Snyder.”

When asked about the alleged “shadow” investigation, Guttell said: “Any action that encourages people to come forward would be inappropriate.”

In a statement, Snyder’s spokesman described the report and investigation as “a politically charged show investigation” and said Congress should not investigate “an issue that a football team addressed many years ago.”

Attorneys Lisa Banks and Debra Godz, who represent more than 40 former team members, recalled Gutell being asked to release a statement from the Wilkinson investigation.

“Today, the panel released a vicious report proving that Snyder and his lawyers were monitoring and investigating the complainants, their lawyers, witnesses and journalists, which Goodell knew and did nothing about,” Banks and Coats said in a statement.

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Maloney has introduced legislation to prevent the use of unpublished contracts in the workplace and to provide protection to employees who use professional images inappropriately. In the charges against the commanders, the crew produced a video of obscene footage from a photo shoot involving the cheerleading group.

Republicans on the committee accused Democrats of pursuing an NFL group to divert attention from more pressing issues and violating the purpose of the group’s mission.

“The main responsibility of this committee is to oversee the executive branch, but this whole Congress and Democrats are blind to the Biden administration,” said James Comer, a Kentucky GOP representative on the committee’s rank. “Instead, the oversight committee is investigating a private company for workplace misconduct that occurred several years ago.”

ESPN’s Disha Thompson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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