NASCAR, Politics, and Sponsorships: Helping the Economy

Contributions and Expenses of the Honorable Mitt McConnell

An example of sponsorship money for one US Senator. Source http://www.opensecrets.org

One of my greatest deviations from the stereotype of the typical southern boy is that I am not a huge fan of NASCAR.  Even though the sport has a national following today, many still categorize it in that southern genre.  Don’t get me wrong, one of my greatest pleasures is working on engines especially older models which do not require having scanners to hook into the vehicles computer and analyze codes.  The pulsating flash created by a timing light is its own unique artwork, and seeing all the parts removed laid out in reverse order on a sheet of plywood to be able to replace a blown head gasket is a masterpiece in my opinion.

Now even though I am not a devoted follower of NASCAR or INDYCAR, I appreciate those who are.  Whether on TV or in person, I simply prefer watching a drag race or even better truck and tractor pulls.  An old friend who is a rabid (he does foam at the mouth from excitement) NASCAR fan gave me an idea in a recent conversation.

As most know both the cars and the driver’s suit and helmet are plastered with the logos of their various sponsors.  Given viewership of the sport, the advertising dollars spent by the respective companies probably represent pennies on the dollar earned from brand exposure.  I’ve seen enough races in person to experience that subliminal messaging created by the blur of  the smallest logo each time a driver completes a lap.  There has to be a logical reason why my group always wants to eat at some place we do not patronize on a regular basis after the race or someone in the coming days will have purchased some specialty tool to see if it actually prevents the skinning of your knuckles trying to remove that mechanically unfriendly located bolt.

My NASCAR brainstorm is that Members of the House of Representatives and United States Senators elected to serve “We the People” wear uniforms with patches displaying their major financial sponsors.  Those contributors will receive recognition for their names and products not just for remarks made on the floors of either chamber via the respective CSPAN network, but additional airtime when the Congressman or Senator appears on some talk program.

Who wouldn’t like this idea?  The contributors receive additional advertising of their products for money already spent.  Consumers undecided between two competing branding will not have to research an individual candidate for a “learned” opinion on which brand their elective representative endorses.  American factories could bid to win the manufacturing contract for that session of Congress and thus create employment opportunities.  Just as in NASCAR or professional sports, officially licensed replicas of a Senator or Congressman’s uniform could be sold as shirts, jackets, caps, pennants, and for the most popular officials maybe their own bobble head figures.  Profits from such sales could go directly to paying down the deficit.

If you are curious to learn of the stickers and patches that your voices in Washington will be wearing, you can look here:

All you need to do is to choose your state and view the “elected officials who represent this state.”  There is even something there for those who enjoy Fantasy Sports.  Each state has a ranking compared to other states, and you can even create a Fantasy League pitting zip code against zip code.

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