Rep. Betty McCollum (D – MN) has suffered another setback in her efforts to end military waste, as her bill to ban military subsidies for NASCAR and professional wrestling was defeated in a vote of 134-290.
Last year, McCollum noted that $26.5 million in funding from the National Guard to Dale Earnhardt Jr. resulted in 20 “qualified” candidates for the guard, and none of them actually joined. At the time McCollum managed to get the funding pulled, but after NASCAR expressed outrage at the decision it was reinstated. This year the overall expense was $53 million, according to McCollum, who noted that they got no recruits once again.
Rep. Richard Hudson (R – NC) represents a district with a major NASCAR track and spearheaded opposition to the bill, saying that pulling military subsidies from the sport amounted to “stealing from our nation’s military” somehow. He insisted that the increase in the size of the military proved the funding must be working somehow.
Hudson went on to claim that you “can’t put a price on” having Dale Jr. wearing a jacket that says “National Guard” on it, though clearly Dale Jr. has been able to do so, and that price is tens of millions of dollars annually.