A day after the Washington Football Team formally announced it was changing its name to the Washington Commanders, it was reported that a bunch of Washington politicians are still very much focused on the workplace harassment that occurred under Dan Snyder at the NFL franchise.
CBS Sports reported Thursday that six former Washington Commanders employees joined members of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Oversight Committee for a roundtable discussion of workplace misconduct there. While the NFL announced seven months ago that they had completed their own investigation into the franchise, it’s clear that certain members of Congress were not satisfied with those results, which have been kept internal.
Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.) hosted the roundtable, which included Emily Applegate, former marketing coordinator; Brad Baker, former video production manager; Melanie Coburn, former cheerleader and director of marketing; Rachel Engleson, former director of marketing and client relations; Tiffani A. Johnston, former cheerleader, and marketing manager; and Ana Nunez, former coordinator of business development.
Baker said that he and other members of the staff were “told to edit together lewd footage” from the cheerleaders‘ “Beauties on the Beach” calendar-shoot documentary “at the request of Daniel Snyder,” noting that “breasts and pubic areas were exposed.” Coburn backed that up and said the video was “secretly made” as “essentially a soft-porn video, soundtracked to Dan Snyder’s favorite bands.”
Other allegations made at the roundtable include a drunken “awards trip” that ended with male employees getting prostitutes to show up to Dan Snyder’s home as well as a time when Snyder seemingly tried to “aggressively pushed” a female employee towards his limo before his attorney advised him against this “very bad idea.”
“That rot started at the top, with team owner Daniel Snyder, and it trickled down,” Rep. Krishnamoorthi said. “Mr. Snyder claimed … that he was ‘unaware of these allegations’ and was simply ‘hands-off as an owner.’ Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. And (NFL commissioner) Mr. (Roger) Goodell has engaged in troubling behavior as well. Goodell claimed in 2014 to embrace a ‘higher standard’ for the NFL … (but) the NFL deep-sixed the findings from its own investigations of the Washington Football Team.”
The Commanders did not respond to a request for comment from CBS Sports, but it’s clear that the sheer number of people who have come forward with these kinds of complaints against Snyder sends an overwhelming message about him and the kind of organization he runs. That he appears to be particularly thin-skinned about criticism only adds to the overall picture of who he is.
You can change the name of the organization, but nothing actually changes until the person atop it does, or leaves.