But in 2019, Republicans don’t look at this issue through the lens of markets or freedom or opportunity. Instead they look at it through the lens of white identity politics—the melange of grievance, racial resentment, and outright racism that animates much of Trumpism. And when you score the issue using white identity politics, you understand exactly where Burr is coming from

First, the debate came to a head this year because of California’s decision to enact a Fair Pay for Play act. Because the law originated in liberal California, obviously, it must be a bad thing and opposing it has the virtue of making the libs angry.

Also, it was supported by famous athletes such Lebron James. Who is liberal, black, and a celebrity elite. Strike two.

And finally, the act will overwhelmingly benefit the people of color who make up a disproportionate share of the athletes in revenue sports. Strike three.

But there’s more. Burr is playing to the conservative sports fan with student loan debt who didn’t have the ability to earn an athletic scholarship whose grievance is against “them”—the kids who are now getting greedy and trying to make a buck when they should be grateful just for this high-class education “we’re” giving them.