But there have been public accusations about these players. They've set records. There is, I think, a widespread feeling that maybe they cheated their way to achieving these records by using illegal drugs.
RUSSERT: Rafael Palmiero, has been cited by only one person: Jose Canseco.
DAVIS: He said he'd like to come and refute that under oath. We're going to give him that opportunity.
RUSSERT: Palmiero's coming?
DAVIS: Well, we've asked him to come.
RUSSERT: Isn't there a problem, though, if just one person like Canseco, who has a long rap sheet, makes a comment about someone like Rafael Palmiero, he comes before your committee and takes the oath -- it gives the suggestion that he did something wrong; or if he doesn't come, the suggestion that he did something wrong, when only one person has accused him?
DAVIS: Well, you have colleagues. I mean, you have people that served together. This is something baseball has just ignored over the last decade, while it's been going on, records have been being set, and they've been breaking attendance records.
You now have not just Canseco. You have grand jury testimony in a number of cases. The more that we find out about this, the widerspread it appears to have been. And we're going to allow members to come and set the record straight.
RUSSERT: Jason Giambi of the New York Yankees has already testified before a grand jury. If he comes before your committee and you grant him immunity, won't that interfere with the criminal justice process?
WAXMAN: Well, the grand jury is not looking at him. The grand jury is looking at BALCO. And we don't think it's going to -- and of course before an immunity would be granted, we'd be checking this out. In fact, we've already started checking it out with the Justice Department.
The purpose of this hearing is not to go after any individual player, to put them in legal jeopardy. The purpose of this hearing is to get the facts.
You can't have a hearing about baseball without the players being involved. And we have baseball, the baseball union, and we should have the players. We have medical people. And we need to look at this from different aspects. It's a problem that needs to be investigated, and we're going to do it.
RUSSERT: Why aren't you bringing the baseball owners?
WAXMAN: We are bringing the Baseball Commission, which represents the baseball owners.
RUSSERT: But there is suggestion that some of the owners looked the other way. Some teams may have altered contracts and turned a blind eye.
DAVIS: Tim, we're bringing in some managers. One of the leaders there in the Oakland A's at the time all this was going on is coming. He's now a baseball executive. So we're looking at it from that aspect.
You can't have everybody in one hearing. We're just trying to set a framework here.
What we'd like baseball to do is admit they have a problem, show what they are doing to fix it, and make sure that we can set the record straight for young people.
This is bad. This is bad for their health. It's bad for kids.
RUSSERT: Will every player that's called be given immunity from prosecution?