AVONDALE, Arizona (AP) – NASCAR denounced its association with the “Let’s go Brandon” political slogan used across the country as an insult to President Joe Biden. Steve Phelps, president of NASCAR, said Friday that the top motorsport competitions in the United States do not want to be associated with left-or-right politics.
Phelps also said NASCAR would pursue action against any illegal use of its trademarks on products bearing this slogan. Retired baseball star Lenny Dijkstra posted a photo on Twitter This week, a man is having breakfast at a hotel in New Jersey, wearing a black Let’s Go Brandon shirt alongside NASCAR colored stripes.
“We will go after everyone (using the logos) and push for it,” Phelps said. “It is not normal. It is not normal that you are using our trademarks illegally, regardless of whether we agree with this position. “
Brandon Brown won his first NASCAR race in October in Alabama, and Talladega Superspeedway viewers at the Xfinity Series chanted “F ―-Joe Biden” during Brown’s interview. It was unclear if NBC Sports reporter Kelly Stavast, who was wearing headphones, heard what the crowd was saying during the interview, and she incorrectly told Brown that fans were cheering, “Come on, Brandon.”
This line has become the rallying cry of Biden’s critics, and “Come, Brandon” is now the conservative code of the original vulgar singing.
“This is an unfortunate situation and I sympathize with Brandon, I sympathize with Kelly,” Phelps said. “I think, unfortunately, this speaks of the state we are in as a country. We do not want to associate ourselves with politics, left or right. “
This is the exact opposite of NASCAR’s long history of allowing political candidates to use their races as a campaign stop. President Donald Trump was the honorary starter of the 2020 Daytona 500, and the full house in February made the NASCAR Super Bowl an election rally until his plane flew over the Florida Autodrome after his team started the engines.
Drivers and their families posed for selfies with Trump ahead of the race, and in early 2016, reigning Cup champion Chase Elliott was among a handful of drivers who, along with then NASCAR chairman Brian France, attended a rally in Georgia in support of Trump. Several members of the group, including NASCAR’s most popular racer, performed on stage.
NASCAR also took an aggressive stance on social justice issues in 2020 during a nationwide racial vote count following the death of George Floyd. NASCAR has banned the display of the Confederate flag at its events at the behest of Bubba Wallace, its only full-time full-time black driver. Wallace wore an “I Can’t Breathe” shirt on the pit road and ran with the Black Lives Matter paint scheme in one race.
Phelps said NASCAR respects the president’s office.
“Do we like the fact that it all started with NASCAR and then spreads elsewhere? No, we don’t like that, ”Phelps said.
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