The NCAA has a few roadblocks to overcome in Congress if it wants passage of some sweet, sweet antitrust exemption. If the Democrats are largely sympathetic to the players’ exercise of their NIL rights, Republicans are reluctant to have the government engage itself in what should be the schools’ business.
… Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said “it’s a terrible, rotten, no good idea to federalize college sports.”
“The worst thing would be for the Congress itself to write the rules,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, which held the hearing. “If anybody has watched 15 or 20 senators try to agree on a press release, imagine what 535 members of Congress would be like trying to write detailed rules.”
… But the hearing, the third time in recent months Congress has taken up the issue, largely made clear how much opposition remains, particularly among some Republicans, to the idea of federal regulation.
“Be careful what you wish for,” Paul said. “The history of government regulation is not a benign one.”
… During the hearing, Alexander, who is not seeking reelection, noted that the Commerce Committee has jurisdiction over the issue but said the NCAA is best equipped to tackle it. “The alternatives are much worse,” Alexander said.
The NCAA’s problem is that it is so wrapped up in the righteousness of an unrighteous clause that it thinks it can get a major concession from Congress without offering any sort of a pot sweetener. That ain’t how politics works.