It all started at a NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Talladega Superspeedway.
NBC reporter Kelli Stavast was interviewing race winner Brandon Brown on the frontstretch after a race. The crowd in the stands, meanwhile, was chanting “F*ck Joe Biden,” which could be heard loud and clear on the TV broadcast.
The phrase has since become ubiquitous as an insult to President Joe Biden. It’s popped up on signs and banners and on t-shirts, and there are multiple songs called “Let’s Go Brandon” on the iTunes charts.
So how does NASCAR feel about the part the sport played in starting this new rallying cry for opponents of President Biden?
They don’t like it.
NASCAR President Steve Phelps addressed the sport’s role in the birth of the “Let’s go Brandon” chant this past weekend ahead of the sport’s championship weekend:
“Do we like the fact that it kind of started with NASCAR and then is gaining ground elsewhere? No, we’re not happy about that.
But we will continue to make sure that we have respect for the office of the president.”
Phelps also said that he feels bad for both the driver and reporter who were involved – and that NASCAR wants to remain out of the politics on both sides.
“It’s an unfortunate situation and I feel for Brandon, I feel for Kelli.
I think unfortunately it speaks to the state of where we are as a country. We do not want to associate ourselves with politics, the left or the right.”
As far as the shirts that have been popping up, some resembling the NASCAR logo, Phelps said that’s something that the sport would be policing to ensure that others aren’t infringing on NASCAR’s trademark:
“To the degree that they’re using a NASCAR logo…we will pursue whoever that is and get that stopped. That’s not ok.
It’s not ok that you’re using our trademarks illegally, regardless of whether we agree with what the position is or not.”