Mon, 26 Sep 2022

Greg Norman going before D.C. lawmakers to defend LIV

Field Level Media
20 Sep 2022, 05:55 GMT+10

LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman heads to Capitol Hill later this week where he is scheduled to sit down with lawmakers in an attempt to improve the company's public image.

The LIV Golf Invitational Series launched earlier this year and has remained in the news for the legal battle with the PGA Tour and criticism it continues to receive for its use of Saudi financing.

"LIV Golf is coming to the Hill this week to meet with lawmakers from both parties," LIV spokesperson Jonathan Grella said in a statement to Politico and other outlets. "Given the PGA Tour's attempts to stifle our progress in reimagining the game, we think it's imperative to educate members on LIV's business model and counter the Tour's anti-competitive efforts."

Lawyers for LIV Golf and several of its players have accused the PGA Tour in a federal antitrust lawsuit of improperly suspending members for their involvement in LIV. Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau are among the players involved in the lawsuit, though Mickelson recently said he might opt to remove his name from the lawsuit.

LIV has been intertwined with political issues from the very start, with Mickelson admitting to author Alan Shipnuck in February that Saudi Arabia -- whose Public Investment Fund is financing the big-money LIV tour -- were "scary m--------s" with a bad human rights record. The Saudi ties have also caught the attention of Republican and Democratic lawmakers.

"My problem is, you have a billion dollars of Saudi money coming in and essentially buying off some of the participants in the PGA Tour with a direct goal of essentially breaking the back of the Tour," U.S. Rep. Chip Roy (R-Tex.) told the Wall Street Journal in July.

Former President Donald Trump has supported LIV in its attempts to rival the PGA Tour. Trump National Bedminster in New Jersey hosted LIV's third event and Trump Doral in Miami will host the season finale.

The Department of Justice also opened a probe into the PGA Tour this year, investigating whether it is trying to act as an illegal monopoly.

--Field Level Media

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