Free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s legal team is expected to seek federal subpoenas against President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in his collusion case against the NFL, according to a published report Thursday.
Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports reported that Kaepernick’s legal team is expected to pursue subpoenas of those two individuals as well as “other officials familiar with the president’s agenda on protesting NFL players.”
The reasoning for the move, per the report, is to discover what Trump, Pence and other officials said in direct discussions with NFL owners about Kaepernick’s free agency and player protests during the national anthem.
Kaepernick started the movement in 2016 to kneel during the national anthem as a protest to denounce police brutality against African-Americans, social injustice and racial inequality. Kaepernick and former 49ers safety Eric Reid have both filed collusion cases against the league after failing to land jobs as free agents.
NFL owners said in depositions that Trump factored into discussions on how to handle player protests in regard to the national anthem, The Wall Street Journal reported on May 30.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones shared the details of a phone call with the President while testifying in the Kaepernick collusion grievance.
“This is a very winning, strong issue for me,” Trump told Jones, according to the newspaper. “Tell everybody, you can’t win this one. This one lifts me.”
The anthem topic became a central issue for the NFL after Trump criticized the movement during a speech last September, stating players should be fired for not standing.
“We’re proud of our country. We respect our flag,” Trump said to loud applause at the campaign event in Alabama. “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out. He’s fired! He’s fired!'”