Tags: white house | nfl | national anthem | policy | step in right direction

WH on NFL Anthem Policy: 'Step in the Right Direction'

WH on NFL Anthem Policy: 'Step in the Right Direction'
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By    |   Wednesday, 18 October 2017 05:13 PM

The NFL is not changing its national anthem policy to require players to stand — and that is "certainly a step in the right direction," White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday.

"As we've said many times before, the president supports standing for the national anthem, saluting the flag and honoring those men and women in uniform that fight to protect it," she told reporters at the daily briefing.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and several owners said Wednesday at the league's fall meetings that altering the policy language from "should stand" to "must stand" was not discussed.

New York Giants owner John Mara noted that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones "spoke at length" to the other owners about the issue.

Jones has said any Dallas player who doesn't stand for "The Star-Spangled Banner" would not play.

Goodell reiterated in a news conference in New York that the league and its 32 clubs "believe everyone should stand for the national anthem.

"It's an important part of our policy and the game," he added. "It's important to honor our flag and our country and I think our fans expect that."

When Goodell was asked what would happen to any owners who threatened discipline for players who did not stand, he said the owners didn't discuss it.

"It wasn't necessary," Goodell said. "We had a real focus on making sure all of our teams understood the kind of dialogue that took place and the kind of things that they were interested in getting support."

He also beat back comments by President Donald Trump on Twitter earlier Wednesday that the NFL's decision was unpatriotic.

"Everyone feels strongly about our country and have pride," Goodell said, adding the NFL was "not afraid of tough conversations.

"What we are trying to stay out of is politics."

Trump later hit back on again on Twitter:

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Politics
The NFL is not changing its national anthem policy to require players to stand - and that is "certainly a step in the right direction," White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday.
white house, nfl, national anthem, policy, step in right direction
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2017-13-18
Wednesday, 18 October 2017 05:13 PM
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