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Warren Demands DOJ Closely Scrutinize PGA Tour’s Saudi Deal

 |  June 14, 2023

Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ron Wyden have requested that the Justice Department’s antitrust division investigate the partnership between the PGA Tour and the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund.

Warren and Wyden wrote a letter to senior DOJ officials on Tuesday, stating that the deal would allow Saudi Arabia to improve its image through sports but would violate multiple provisions of antitrust law. They also argued that the deal would not address Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.

Senators Warren and Wyden have written a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Kanter expressing concern about the potential PGA-LIV deal. They state that the deal would involve American golfers and their fans in the Saudi regime’s attempts to sanitize its abuses through sports funding.

Related: Blumenthal Opens Probe Into PGA Tour & LIV Golf Merger

Last week, the PGA Tour announced a partnership with LIV Golf, owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, along with the European-based DP World Tour, which surprised many.

“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,” the senators added.

No matter the structure, the lawmakers argued, the deal would violate multiple provisions of antitrust law including Section 1 of the Sherman Act, which criminalizes actions “in restraint of trade or commerce.”