The state of Arizona has been the center of national attention this month. Earlier this week a bill reached the desk of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer. The bill, if passed into law would have given business owners the right to refuse service to gay and lesbian couples. The bill argued that it went against some business owners religious views to provide service to those that live a gay or lesbian lifestyle.
This political topic hit the sports world when the NFL released a statement hinting that it might be forced to move the Super Bowl should the bill be passed into law. Had Governor Brewer decided to pass the bill, it would have been interesting to see what NASCAR would have done. Both the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series are scheduled to hold events in the state this weekend at the Phoenix International Raceway.
Leading up to the bill hitting the Governor’s desk, NASCAR had not made any statement in regards to what they would do if the bill were to be passed into law. On Thursday evening, NASCAR released a statement shortly after the bill was vetoed.
We are pleased with Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s veto of SB1062. NASCAR actively strives to promote diversity and inclusion throughout the motorsports industry. NASCAR has a zero tolerance policy against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, race, gender, national origin, age, color, disability, religion, or other factors which deny the essential humanity of all people.
If Arizona had passed the bill into law, NASCAR would have been put in a very awkward spot. This weekend’s races in Phoenix will by no means garner the media attention that the Fiesta Bowl, NCAA Final Four or Super Bowl would have. However, NASCAR is still a well-known entity and the pressure for them to be the first to make a stand would have been strong.
Thankfully for the sports world and the state, the bill was not passed. This not only saves the state even more negative press but it also saves them millions of dollars that they would have lost when the NCAA and NFL would have pulled major events from them.