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Russia should be banned from 2020 Tokyo Olympics

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By the time Salt Lake entertains another winter game, the question won't be if Russia will still try to juice their athletes. They will. The question will be if Salt Lake can hold Russia accountable with whatever means necessary, as they did in 2002.

In a late-breaking development, the Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Act of 2019, a bill going through Congress with bi-partisan support, would establish a new federal crime related to the use of prohibited substances to influence the outcome of certain international sports competitions and targets countries who dope their athletes to be held legally accountable. By using parallels to RICO organized-crime statutes, the bill would use the power of oversight of U.S. companies and for-profit television networks who sponsor, fund, and promote international athletics events with American dollars, people, and companies. This is a potentially extraordinarily effective mechanism to end state-sponsored doping. WADA supports the concept but is expressing reservations about oversight from others, while the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency strongly supports the measure.

Salt Lake's actions have stood the test of time on dealing with the Russians. For now, all eyes will be on Tokyo.

Robert Weiner is a former spokesman for the Office of National Drug Control Policy and directed WADA media outreach at the Salt Lake Olympics. He assisted in creation of WADA and USADA. August Clarke is sports policy analyst at Robert Weiner Associates and Solutions for Change.

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Robert Weiner, NATIONAL PUBLIC AFFAIRS AND ISSUES STRATEGIST Bob Weiner, a national issues and public affairs strategist, has been spokesman for and directed the public affairs offices of White House Drug Czar and Four Star General Barry (more...)
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