NEW YORK (AP) -- Bud Selig was urged to resign by the House Judiciary Committee's ranking Democrat, who said the commissioner appeared to violate major league rules in a 1995 loan from a company controlled by the Minnesota Twins owner.
Rep. John Conyers Jr. of Michigan said Wednesday the loan created an "irreparable conflict of interest" for Selig in his plan to fold two franchises, a proposal that most likely would include the Twins.
"In light of this disclosure and your apparent unwillingness to reveal other financial information that you assert supports your decision to eliminate two baseball teams, I regret that I must call on you to resign as commissioner of major league baseball," Conyers wrote in a letter to Selig that the congressman released.
Selig sent a two-page letter to Conyers, saying he "was both stunned and disappointed to receive your letter."
"Let me be unequivocal," Selig wrote. "The suggestions made in your letter are wholly unacceptable."
Rep. Bill Luther, a Minnesota Democrat, echoed Conyers, saying "the best interests of baseball are not served by having a team owner serve as commissioner.
"Selig's recent contraction scheme, along with the revelation of his possibly improper multimillion-dollar loan underscore the importance of having new leadership in major league baseball."
Conyers accused baseball of lying to the committee and asked Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner, the committee chairman, to hold another hearing on baseball's antitrust exemption. Conyers was critical of Selig when the commissioner testified in Washington last month.
Selig admitted this week that in 1995, a company controlled by Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pohlad arranged for a $3 million loan to the Milwaukee Brewers, run at the time by Selig and now by his daughter, Wendy Selig-Prieb.
Former commissioners Bowie Kuhn, Peter Ueberroth and Fay Vincent said the loan was unprecedented and might have broken the rule prohibiting loans from the owner of one team to another.
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