Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe said in an appearance on 1140 WRVA on Tuesday that it would be unwise to assume the conflict between the Washington Redskins and the federal government will drive the team out of D.C. and into Virginia.
The Redskins have expressed a desire to move from their current home at FedEx Field in Landover, Md., but the National Park Service recently announced it would not allow a new lease at the RFK Stadium site in part because of opposition to the team's name. RFK Stadium, which is on Park Service land, was home to the Redskins for 36 years until the team moved to Landover in 1997.
McAuliffe's concession that Virginia may not become home to the Redskins was uncharacteristic, as he has actively advocated for the team's move to his state. The Redskins' practice and training camp facilities are both located in Virginia, as are many of their fans, leading McAuliffe to say in April that Virginia is where the team belongs.
McAuliffe, a Democrat, has not spoken out against the Redskins' controversial nickname, standing in contrast with Washington, D.C., mayor Muriel Bowser and former Maryland governor Martin O'Malley, who have both supported a name change. Bowser is also lobbying for the team to move to the District.
The Virginia governor has pitched Loudoun County as a potential site for a stadium to both the Redskins and DC United.
- Erin Flynn