The L.A. TIMES reports Los Angeles Marathon, Inc., the
company that runs the L.A. Marathon, has reportedly admitted to
laundering thousands of dollars for the campaigns of former L.A.
Mayor Tom Bradley, Oakland Mayor Elihu Harris and others. The
company has been fined $436,000 by the L.A. Ethics Commission and
the CA state Fair Political Practices Commission. The firm
admitted to being the "true source" of 137 campaign contributions
while "illicitly" reimbursing its employees (L.A. TIMES, 9/27).
Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-OH), a longtime foe of baseball's
antitrust exemption, threatened again last night to attach his
legislation revoking the exemption as an amendment to an
appropriations bill. But at the suggestion of Democratic
colleagues, he again withdrew his measure for a later time.
Metzenbaum and UT Republican Orrin Hatch are co-sponsors of a
revised bill that would lift the exemption should the owners
unilaterally impose a salary cap. Both senators argued their
case last night that the baseball antitrust amendment should be
attached to the HHS appropriations bill because of a
parliamentary loophole that made it "germane" to that particular
piece of legislation. Metzenbaum had claimed that the HHS bill
would be the last chance for an amendment before adjournment (THE
BACK ON THE HILL TODAY: For the second time in two weeks, a
House subcommittee will hold hearings on baseball's labor
situation. Today, it is the labor-management subcommittee of the
House Education and Labor Committee chaired by Rep. Pat Williams
(D-MT). Williams has proposed legislation that would establish a
three-person arbitration panel to settle the baseball dispute
should no agreement be reached by February 1. Among those
scheduled to appear: Chief management negotiator Richard
Ravitch, MLB labor relation committee General Counsel Charles
O'Connor, MLBPA General Counsel Gene Orza, the Yankees' Bernie
Williams and the Dodgers' Orel Hershiser. Williams' bill is "not
very likely to go anywhere this session," but it "would probably
have a better chance" next year than the bill to strip the
antitrust exemption (Murray Chass, N.Y. TIMES, 9/28).
SPEAKING OF WHICH ... The House Judiciary Committee will
vote, possibly as early as tomorrow, on a bill sponsored by Rep.
Mike Synar (D-OK) to lift the exemption should the owners
unilaterally impose a cap. The vote could come tomorrow
(AP/PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 9/28).
A civil lawsuit brought against MLB by Vincent Piazza and
Vincent Tirendi, who were rejected in their bid to move the
Giants to FL, is scheduled to begin tomorrow in a Philadelphia
federal court. The suit alleged that Piazza and Tirendi's civil
rights, state contract laws and federal antitrust laws were
violated by MLB. Harvard Law's Paul Weiler, noting that a jury
may be prejudiced against the owners by the ongoing labor
dispute: "There's no doubt the strike makes this a tougher case
for baseball." The case will center around the issue of
"defamation" concerning a '92 comment from Fred Kuhlmann of the
Cardinals that Piazza had problems with his "background." Piazza
alleges an anti-Italian bias. But the case has "the potential to
bring down" baseball's antitrust exemption. While U.S. District
Court Judge John Padova has already ruled that the exemption
"won't have any validity in this case," the owners vow to appeal
the case to the Supreme Court should Piazza and Tirendi prevail
(Noam Neusner, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 9/28).