Washington, DC - Conservative golfers have been making some of their politics clear in the last two years. Now it seems the 99% white NASCAR world is following suit. 5 of 12 drivers invited to the White House to meet with President Barack Obama, declined the invitation. Yahoo Sports says the racers claimed scheduling conflicts, but the meeting is not set on a race day, but rather on Wednesday, September 7, 2011.
Drivers Gregg Biffle, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart all declined. President Obama said the event was to celebrate the drivers' athletic achievements and their public service acts. NASCAR racers are generally heavily involved in charitable programs, with many drivers forming their own charities.
Clint Bowyer, Jeff Burton, Kyle Busch, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Denny Hamlin, and Matt Kenseth have accepted and will meet with Obama on the 7th. The time slot opened up due to the fact that the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, refused to allow President Obama to hold a joint session on that evening to address the nationwide jobs situation.
The real reason for skipping the meeting will likely not stay a secret for very long. Unlike professional golf, loose lips have been know to expose many a driver. However, political discontent has not made headlines in the world of auto-racing like it has in golf. Comments by Fred Funk, Paul Azinger revealed the right wing underbelly of athletes who participate in a sport that average Americans have to spend a lot of money to take part in.
If Black and Latino members of the 2006 Florida Gator team or the 2001 Duke University basketball team had snubbed George Bush, conservative media mouthpieces would have called it an amateur, "Bush League" move. (No pun intended) Don't expect to hear any such criticisms from Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh or any of those types about this.