College football's BCS and Congress Part 2
A few weeks ago, I publicly registered my dismay at the announcement that Congress would be holding hearings about the BCS.
Congressman Joe Barton (R-TX) was reported by the AP to be spearheading the drive to get to the bottom of the “deeply flawed” BCS (Barton’s words).
Well, the Bowl Season is upon us. Although I am not an ardent college football fan, I will say that I have seen some incredible kick-ass football match-ups this year. Iowa and Michigan both had a chance to come from behind (but were screwed by the refs). Penn State and Florida State battled heroically last night. And tonight, we have a national title game the likes of which we haven’t seen for many a year.
So, my question is: How flawed is the BCS?
No, I take that back. My question is: Does Congressman Barton still think the BCS is so awful?
I’m guessing not. I’m guessing that his main contributors are no longer up in arms about potential lost revenue, and are not pushing him to work to revamp the BCS.
Who are Barton’s main contributors? According to opensecrets.org, Barton received more money ($55,000) from the TV/Movie/Film industry during the 2006 election cycle than any House member other than Dennis Hastert. And his largest single contributor is Comcast – the cable TV folks – who chipped in $21,500 via their PAC.
In other words, as long as it looked like TV ratings for bowl games might go down, Barton was all over the BCS. Now that the bowl season has turned out to be so entertaining, I’m curious to see how far he’s willing to pursue the issue.
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I would have never thought you could buy a politition for what seems like so little.