Ban of NASCAR military sponsors sought

Feb. 16, 2011 at 12:19 PM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 16 (UPI) -- The U.S. military should not be spending money on sponsoring NASCAR teams, Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn., said in a budget bill she sponsored.

McCollum's chief of staff, Bill Harper, told The Virginia-Pilot newspaper in Norfolk his boss sponsored the budgetary amendment to address the plight of a growing number of veterans and their families.

"There's an amendment on the floor to eliminate all funding for homeless veterans," he said. "On one hand, we're eliminating assistance to men and women who served our country ... and on the other hand, we're paying for race cars."

Currently, the National Guard sponsors Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s team, the Army sponsors Ryan Newman's cars, and the Air Force sponsors AJ Allmendinger's team in the Sprint Cup Series, the newspaper said.

Harper said the forces should remain active at recruiting at NASCAR events, but spend their money elsewhere.

"I would challenge the Pentagon to give me one example of someone today in Iraq or Afghanistan who saw the Go Army car going around the race track and that's why they joined the Army," he said.

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