That should get conservatives all riled-up.
Rush Limbaugh's bid to buy the St. Louis Rams ran into opposition within the NFL on Tuesday. Colts owner Jim Irsay vowed to vote against him, and commissioner Roger Goodell said the conservative commentator's "divisive" comments would not be tolerated from any NFL insider.
"I, myself, couldn't even consider voting for him," Irsay said at an owners meetings. "When there are comments that have been made that are inappropriate, incendiary and insensitive ... our words do damage, and it's something that we don't need."
"Divisive comments are not what the NFL is all about," commissioner Roger Goodell said. "I would not want to see those kind of comments from people who are in a responsible position in the NFL."
Prominent blacks are already lining up against Limbaugh, including the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. NFL Players Association head DeMaurice Smith, who also is black, urged players to speak out against Limbaugh's bid, and several have already said they would not play for his team.
But Irsay is the first owner who has stated unequivocally he would reject Limbaugh if it comes up for a vote. Prospective owners must be approved by 24 of the league's 32 teams.
Irsay said at first that he would consult with people he respected, such as defensive lineman Dwight Freeney, coach Jim Caldwell and former coach Tony Dungy, all of whom are black. But later, the owner said he did not need to get anyone else's input before rejecting someone who made a habit of "demonizing individuals."
"I met Rush only once. He seemed like a nice guy to me and all those kind of things," Irsay said. "It's bigger than the NFL. As a nation, and as a world, we've got to watch our words and our thoughts. They can do damage."