Finally the federal gov’t is speaking up in support of the CFL in face of the NFL invasion into Canada. Senator Larry Campbell will introduce a bill in the Senate within two weeks and he stated, “I plan on trying to make it very difficult for the NFL to come into Canada.”

Mr. Campbell believes the CFL is worth protecting and has become the lightening rod in bringing the CFL’s dillema into the national spotlight. Here is another recent statement he made in the Senate:


Statement by:
The Honourable Larry W. Campbell
Tuesday, April 8, 2000



Hon. Larry W. Campbell: Honourable senators, I am sure that when the word ‘‘culture’’ is mentioned, the name ‘‘Senator Campbell’’ does not spring to mind. However, I rise today to speak on culture.

In February, it was announced that the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League intend to play eight games in the beautiful city of Toronto over the next five years. This is viewed by many as the first step toward either moving an existing franchise to Toronto, or awarding the city an expansion team.

What would be the result? It would be a few people turning a $1-billion investment into a $6-billion windfall at the expense of the Canadian Football League. If this plan were to come to fruition, I, together with many others, believe that the CFL’s future would be in significant peril. As proud Canadians and fans of the CFL, we must make every effort to defend our own brand of football.

The Canadian Football League has existed for over 100 years, many times longer than the National Football League, and has provided Canadians of all ages with sporting memories that will last a lifetime. It is a league that is uniquely Canadian in both its rules and support. It is a league that generates hundreds of jobs across Canada and millions of dollars in related revenue for each member city. In 2005, the Grey Cup had an economic impact on the city of Vancouver to the tune of approximately $48 million over that weekend. It is a league that gives back to the communities in which it thrives through dozens of programs and monetary donations. It is a league that, through decades of existence, has produced hundreds of local and national sporting heroes for the young people of Canada. It is a league that millions of people have grown up with, supported and loved. What is perhaps most important, it is a league that holds our country together: Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec and, soon, the Schooners from the East Coast.

As Canadians, we must ensure that this great cultural icon does not become extinct over the wishes of one city and one group of people in this country. I urge honourable senators to support the Canadian Football League and its existence.

The NFL will not kill the CFL. I might kill the Blue Jays or Raptors. Marginal sports. But it will not affect the CFL one iota. This Senator, while his cause is worthy, is another of these chicken littles.

as opposed to being an ostrich with head in the sand??

Successful NFL team in Toronto will kill CFL as we know it. Maybe, I say maybe, it might be reborn as a semi pro league with about 6 teams, but no guarantee.

Then again, as a semi pro league playing in 15-20 thousand seat stadiums, maybe we might even have more teams. Good or bad, you be the judge.

I'm a very passionate CFL fan and have been a season ticket holder of the TiCats for many years. But if the CFL needs this sort of protection to survive, if it really is that weak across Canada, then I say it should go the way of the dodo bird.

Fortunately the CFL isn't that weak and an NFL team in Canada will not destroy it. Mr. Senator, go do something more productive with your time and don't waste my tax dollars on this please.

The government has some form of protection in place for Canadian content in just about everything. I don't see why this is any different, the game is uniquely Canadian.

Certain things we need to protect like universal healthcare and public education. But we protect too much too many things that aren't real essential to Canada like a Canadian professional football league, publications, radio stations. Supporting and making fertile ground for a pro football league, publications, radio stations etc., hey, that's a good idea. But I'm getting away with actual legislation in an digital electronic age where information is readily available without borders.

Awesome, I'm all for it! Cultural institutions are sacrosant under NAFTA. This isn't an issue in business, it's an issue culture. The government turned down the sale of the company that makes the Canadarm, maybe they'll have some balls an step up for the CFL.

So If the dodo bird can't protect itself when it faces extermination, it deserves to become extinct?

I guess we can bid farewell to polar bears, blue whales, great white sharks, and anything else on the endangered species list.

waste what tax dollars? so far, not one cent has been spent on it.

Fact is, thanks to a number of things such as a few decades of weak canadian dollar, influx of too many immagrants who in turn are inundated with USA advertising and promotions of their leagues, too many canadian media who help that process, USA wannabe torontonians, etc, CFL is not highly popular. That doesnt mean that it shouldnt be protected. We spend mony protecting old buildings that 99% of us couldnt give a damn about. Same with art gallaries and other such crap. Its doesnt cost much to debate and pass bills, during which time they would be debating something else anyhow.

Well you do not have to look any further then the NHL as an example. The league spread through out the USA only to water down the product. I do not know about most of you but todays NHL is so bad I can not watch more then one period. It has driven me to the WHL where I feel is more entertainment for less bucks. The NHL is one step above ice capades realy and the american influence is the cause of it. The CFL is not only a sport for Canadians but a culture. (6 years of history our forefathers and mothers watched. It would be nice to know that our grand children would be able to enjoy this culture in the future. I am glad if they do put a bill in place. I do not want football in Canada to resemble antyhing like the NFL. Football is fine to watch NFL or CFL but there is nothing like the CFL live in our country.
Over the past 35 years there has been talk of the NFL invasion into Canada. The problem over those years no one was stupid enough to follow through. Well it appears we notw have a few clowns that will try. I hope they lose their shirts but if it takes government to stop this nonsense then go for it. From the senate no less I am proud of Mr. Campbells stand.

I disagree. Do you think that fans from BC are going to fly out to Vancouver to see an NFL team? Or from Montreal, or anywhere else for that matter.

Toronto and Hamilton might lose a few fans but not enough to make a difference to them or any other team

Great post RW2005! Good points! :thup: :thup:

I've never liked Mr Campbell when he was MAyor. I don't Like Liberal policies, but you know what, there is a first for everything. Like 2005, I am Proud of Senator Campbells stand. :thup: :thup:

Mark this on your calendar folks....Sporty supporting a Federal Liberal!

The NFL in Toronto will make the CFL healthier in the long run even if there isn't a team in Toronto or Hamilton, which is unlikey anyways. I'm not going to explain it because few will understand my logic.
Please don't underestimate that Toronto doesn't run the entire country for everything, including the CFL. Sure some advertising dollars may be more difficult to get but I hate it when people think Toronto runs everything and controls everything. THEY DON'T AND DON'T LET ANYONE TELL YOU THEY DO!! I'm sick of this attitude. :x

The NFL in Toronto won't hurt the teams out West much, but it will most definately take a large bit out of sponsor dollars out east for teams like Hamilton, Toronto, and Ottawa.

It won't kill the CFL and the vast majority of the fans will not notice much difference, but it will take a backseat from the media with an NFL team in Toronto and lose sponsorship money.

ok. so we cant agree on the damage it will do. Thing is, either side could be right, and I dont want to be right. I dont want to find out that I am right. I dont want to take the chance. Safest thing is to keep NFL out, and I will fight to the death to do just that.

One thing I do agree with you doomsayers is that the fight to keep the NFL out, in and of itself, is good free advertising for the CFL and keeps people thinking football.

I appluad our senator for speaking out. There is nothing wrong with protecting that which is truly canadian. Do we need it?? I don't think so, but safegaurds are good.
It would be foolish to think that a country would go into another ones to set up a football leaugue. Uhhh, but didn't that happen a few years back? Our own CFL tried it. What was the success? Were there any fans?

He spoke out now 8 years ago. This isn't news.


Redstallion hits on something interesting - we're being a bit two-faced here, since the CFL entered the NFL's backyard first. We kinda pooped in our own stew if they decide turnabout is fair play.....

We were never a threat to the NFL and they know the difference.