Last week’s civil verdict against Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf initially attracted attention because it flowed from a 21-year-old lawsuit. Ultimately, it could make it harder for the Vikings to escape their 31-year-old home.
Given that the litigation arose from allegedly inappropriate business practices committed by the Wilfs in an unrelated context, Governor Mark Dayton has urged the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Authority to make one final review of the stadium deal, to ensure that no chicanery occurred in the negotiations. And that’s precisely what the MSFA’s board is doing.
“Everybody is on high alert that this is going to be looked at under a fine microscope,” member Duane Benson said, via the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “The governor is not going to, nor are we going to, treat this lightly. A lot of legislators will be watching this very closely, as well we should.”
Technically, the stadium deal isn’t finalized. If a fine-toothed comb reveals issues or potential misrepresentations or other evidence of underhanded business practices, the agreement could potentially implode.
If actual or apparent proof of misconduct appears, it would indeed be proper to ask questions and to resolve any issues that arise. It would be improper, however, for the powers-that-be to use an unrelated lawsuit as cover to squeeze the Wilfs into reconfiguring a bargain about which some politicians may be having remorse.