The team owners for the San Francisco Giants and Arizona Diamondbacks donated max contributions to Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.), a QAnon supporter who tweeted the location of House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi during the U.S. Capitol attack and has clashed with police, according to FEC filings reviewed by the SFGATE.
Giants principal owner Charles B. Johnson and his wife, Ann, each donated the maximum allowable amount of $2,800 for a congressional candidate. Diamondbacks owner Earl “Ken” Kendrick and his wife, Randy, also donated $2,800 each.
The donations are from September, two months before election day. The report of their previous donations comes after MLB suspended all political contributions in the wake of the U.S. Capitol riot.
Colorado Rep. Boebert’s ties to QAnon
Boebert was a surprise victor in the June 30 Republican primary and garnered immediate support from President Donald Trump even though he initially backed her opponent. She was sworn in on Jan. 3.
She said in May she hopes QAnon “is real because it only means America is getting stronger and better and people are returning to conservative values,” via Axios. She has since tried to distance herself from it.
The FBI first denoted these baseless fringe conspiracy theories as a new domestic terrorist threat in August 2019.
Giants owner largest Republican sports donors
The contributions by the Johnsons are dated Sept. 23, per SFGate. Johnson, 88, has deep ties with the Republican party. He has contributed $10,995,500 to Republican campaigns or super PACs that support Republicans since 2016, per an October investigation by ESPN and FiveThirtyEight. His net worth is nearly $4.9 billion, according to Forbes, and he’s the second-richest owner in MLB.
It’s nearly five times as much as the second-highest contribution total of Orlando Magic team owner Dan DeVos — the brother-in-law of outgoing secretary of education Betsy DeVos — who gave $2.28 million. Johnson also gave $35,000 to bipartisan groups and $5,200 to Democrats.
Giants owner involved in Hyde-Smith controversy
Johnson’s donations have drawn attention before. He and his wife donated max amounts to Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith’s campaign in 2018, but asked for it back after she said of a supporter: “If he invited me to a public hanging, I would be on the front row.”
Johnson said in a public statement the remark was “stupid” and that he’d gotten his donation returned.
“On the whole, I don’t like the idea of politics affecting anything I do with the Giants,” he said, via the San Francisco Chronicle.
D-backs owner, wife backed Trump opponents in 2016
The Kendricks gave their donations on Sept. 12. Ken Kendrick has given $1,379,700 to Republicans since 2016, per ESPN and FiveThirtyEight. No contributions to bipartisan or Democratic groups are listed.
Before the 2016 presidential election, wife Randy Kendricks helped fund a super PAC to portray Trump as “too reckless to be president,” via the Arizona Republic. She said then she couldn’t stay silent after Trump refused to disavow former KKK leader David Duke.
“We should be able to denounce white supremacists and we should be able to do it quickly,” said Kendrick. She went on to describe a conversation she had with her husband.
“Ken said, ‘Randy, our obligation is to our own ethics, our integrity, our values. They aren’t to a particular party. We didn’t take a loyalty oath to the party.’”
She added that Trump’s followers may not realize the “tinderbox you could set off if you exacerbate” racial and ethnic tensions.
Rep. Boebert has been asked to resign after Capitol riot
Boebert is under calls to resign. Dozens of Colorado’s elected officials in her 3rd Congressional District wrote to U.S. House leaders to condemn her acts “based on her association with the right-wing groups that supported the insurrection of the Capitol building,” per 9News in Colorado.
They asked for an investigation, adding "there is deep concern about her actions leading up to and during the protests that turned into a violent and deadly mob."
Boebert tweeted throughout the attack on the Capitol carried out by Trump supporters. She wrote “Today is 1776” at 8:30 a.m. and while the mob was in the Capitol wrote that lawmakers were “locked in the House Chambers” and “the Speaker has been removed from the chambers.”
Other congresspeople have said and written on Twitter that they were told not to disclose their location in order to keep everyone safe. Republicans have also reportedly raised concerns about Boebert risking their safety with her tweets, via The Hill.
When Congress came back that night to certify the election of President-elect Joe Biden, Boebert voted against ratifying the results. She complained about the new metal detectors installed at the Capitol this week and refused to allow police to search her bag, resulting in a standoff.
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