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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Legality of PGA Tour-Saudi Bombshell Deal Being Questioned By U.S. Senate

  • The Senate will examine the controversial deal during a hearing on Tuesday.
  • Two PGA Tour executives will testify but no one from LIV Golf will be there.
Golf bag leaning on PGA Tour signage
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The controversial alliance between the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund will be laid bare on Tuesday when two Tour officials testify at a Senate hearing examining the bombshell agreement.

As part of the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, the session titled “The PGA-LIV Deal: Implications for the Future of Golf and Saudi Arabia’s Influence in the United States” will look at the legality of the partnership.

Representing the PGA Tour are chief operating officer Ron Price and policy board member Jimmy Dunne — the man largely responsible for brokering the deal with PIF governor Yasir al-Rumayyan. Dunne has previously shared his side of the deal and his thoughts on the future, while Price wrote an op-ed for The Athletic asserting the deal is the best option for the PGA Tour.

The subcommittee requested al-Rumayyan and LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman attend the hearing, but both declined. PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan — who will return from a medical leave next week — reportedly would’ve considered testifying if the hearing was delayed. 

Price and Dunne could offer new revelations about the deal and clues toward golf’s hazy future.

PGA Tour Exec Resigns 

In the wake of the PIF deal, PGA Tour policy board member Randall Stephenson resigned, citing concerns over the tie-up with Saudi Arabia, which has a long record of human rights abuse allegations and political tensions with the U.S.

Beyond golf and the PGA Tour, the PIF’s efforts will continue with a new company dedicated entirely to sports.

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