Three days after Major League Baseball requested a refund on its campaign contributions to Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, the league is under fire again for another political donation.
MLB donated $1,000 to Minnesota Rep. Jason Lewis last year, a Republican congressman with a history of racist and misogynistic remarks, according to The Washington Post. Lewis called women voters who care about abortion or same-sex marriage "ignorant" and "non-thinking" during his radio show in 2012, and "equated slavery with taxation of rich people" in 2008, according to The Atlantic.
CNN also dug up recordings of Lewis saying people on government assistance were "parasites."
The league, which has donated millions to politicians in both parties, will suspend its political contributions following the recent criticism, MLB spokesman Pat Courtney told the Post.
“In July of 2017, during a non-election year, lobbyists for Major League attended a fundraiser (for $1,000) as an opportunity to meet a new member of Congress who had been appointed to two committees with jurisdiction over matters relevant to Major League Baseball,” Courtney told the Washington Post. “At the time of this event, no one at Major League Baseball was aware of the offensive comments made by Mr. Lewis... Had we been aware of Mr. Lewis’ comments, which are at odds with our values, we would not have supported him or attended the event.”
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred denounced Hyde-Smith's "public hanging" comment on Tuesday, saying they were "completely at odds with the values that Major League Baseball has always embraced." He has not commented on the league's donation to Lewis.