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Edwards Says Anthem Protests Won't Disrupt Saints Subsidies

George Beinhart /

Gov. John Bel Edwards says there are "more effective ways" to protest than to refuse to stand during the national anthem. But Louisiana's governor dismissed suggestions the New Orleans Saints should lose its state subsidies because several of its players wouldn't stand.

Edwards, a former Army Ranger, acknowledged that people have a right to protest, but he encouraged people to be on their feet for the anthem.

Ten Saints players wouldn't stand for the national anthem during Sunday's game. 

Two Louisiana lawmakers are pushing to reconsider state subsidies to the NFL team because of the controversy. But Edwards says Louisiana "must continue to meet its contractual obligations with the Saints."

The governor spoke on a New Orleans area radio show Wednesday, and his office provided a transcript of his comments.