OCEAN CITY, Md. (CBSDC/AP) — Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan is criticizing a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decision disallowing the Washington Redskins’ nickname because it is “disparaging.”
Hogan said Wednesday in Ocean City that the ruling by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board “should offend anyone concerned about constitutional limits on government power and free speech.”
He says the matter should be decided by the Redskins and their fans without interference from politicians.
The decision Wednesday has no immediate impact and will likely be tied up in courts for years. The Redskins say they will appeal, and the team’s name continues to have trademark protection while the matter makes its way through the courts.
Hogan was the appointments secretary to former Gov. Robert Ehrlich. He is one of four candidates in next Tuesday’s primary.
Many other politicians, including President Barack Obama, have said the team should at least consider changing the name.
Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who has been one of the most vocal critics of the name on Capitol Hill, spoke bluntly on the Senate floor.
“The writing is on the wall. It’s on the wall in giant blinking neon lights,” Reid said. “The name will change and justice will be done for the tribes in Nevada and across the nation who care so deeply about this issue.”
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