Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) accused NASCAR of siding against the families of Newtown, Connecticut by allowing the National Rifle Association (NRA) to sponsor a NASCAR race at the Texas Motor Speedway in April. The race will be called the NRA 500.
In a letter to NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France on Thursday, Murphy said NASCAR had "crossed a line" by deciding to "put yourself in the middle of a political debate, and you have taken a side that stands in opposition to the wishes of so many Newtown families who support common sense gun reform."
"Why take sides against the families of Newtown, Connecticut, by teaming up with the NRA in the middle of an intense legislative fight over gun laws?" Murphy asked. "As a U.S. Senator representing the community of Newtown, Connecticut, I write to you today to ask that you reconsider this decision."
Murphy accused the NRA of taking an "unprecedented extreme position in the debate over the proper response to this tragedy" after the "horrific mass shooting in Newtown."
"Given the emotional state of the national conversation, I believe it would be imprudent for NASCAR to step into such a heated political debate and take sides in this debate by allowing the NRA the title role in the race," Murphy wrote.
NASCAR announced the deal with the NRA on Monday.