Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Senator Blumenthal, on Judiciary Committee, Has Another Perspective on Linda McMahon

[posted 1/27/11 to]

One of the committee assignments Senator Richard Blumenthal has landed is Judiciary. It’s a reminder that the campaign for the Senate seat last year reopened questions about obstruction of justice from 1989 to 1994 by Linda McMahon and her company, the forerunner of World Wrestling Entertainment.

In April, reporter Ted Mann of New London’s The Day dug out of court archives McMahon’s December 1, 1989, memo instructing wrestling executive Pat Patterson to tip off Pennsylvania ring doctor George Zahorian that he was under federal criminal investigation for steroid distribution. The document is viewable at

I remain interested in Mann’s original coverage of the source of the leak to McMahon. She said it was James West, at the time the George H.W. Bush administration’s U.S. attorney for the middle district of Pennsylvania. West said “no” to Mann and “no comment” to me; the second answer is different than the first and lends itself to follow-up and specifics.

The passing along of such information by a federal prosecutor would be a very serious matter warranting exposure and airing, no matter how many years later. In addition, that history bears on efforts to reform and regulate the pro wrestling industry moving forward.

But let’s face it: If Linda McMahon is intent on running for office again in 2012 — as all reports and as her visibility on the “rubber chicken circuit” suggest — then her opponents will have their own reasons to be pressuring new Senate Judiciary Committee member Blumenthal to look more closely at the dangling mysteries of that 1989 memo.


“How the McMahons’ WWE Beat the Rap in the 1990s (Part 2, the Steroid Charges),” November 30, 2010,

“How Vince and Linda McMahon’s WWE Beat the 1990s Steroid Charges: A Resource Guide,” November 30, 2010,

Irv Muchnick

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