Two major Democrats are asking for the Justice Department to investigate the PGA Tour-LIV merger, which would likely anger former President Donald Trump, an ally and supporter of the Saudi-backed LIV Golf.
Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ron Wyden have publically suggested that the agreement violates the Sherman Antitrust Act and would make any American golf fan “complicit” in “the Saudi regime’s latest attempt to sanitize its abuses by pouring funds into major sports leagues.”
Warren and Wyden sent a joint letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Kanter on the matter.
“Significantly, the deal appears to have a substantial adverse impact on competition, violating several provisions of U.S. antitrust law, regardless of whether the deal is structured as a merger or some sort of joint venture,” said the letter.
The letter also says the deal will “make a U.S. organization complicit—and force American golfers and their fans to join this complicity—in the Saudi regime’s latest attempt to sanitize its abuses by pouring funds into major sports leagues.”
Trump, who is currently the frontrunner for the 2024 Republican nomination for U.S. President, is a huge supporter of LIV and has an uncomfortably cozy relationship with the Saudi Arabian government. Many of LIV’s tournaments have been played on Trump-owned courses and he played in their pro-am tournament last season.
Per Newsweek, a senior political scientist said that if Trump gets to host a PGA Tour event because of this deal, it would be “a coup.”