House Homeland Security Committee staffers are on a peculiar mission to study "public health issues at events involving mass gatherings," which has personally insulted Rep. Robin Hayes of Concord, North Carolina.
The event: NASCAR.
The rub: the requirement that the Democrat and Republican staffers attending first be immunized against Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, tetanus, diphtheria, and influenza.
"I have never heard of immunizations for domestic travel, and as the representative for Concord, North Carolina, I feel compelled to ask why the heck the committee feels that immunizations are needed to travel to my hometown," Mr. Hayes, a Republican, said in a letter to Rep. Bennie Thompson, Mississippi Democrat and committee chairman.
"I have been to numerous NASCAR races, and the folks who attend these events certainly do not pose any health hazard to congressional staffers or anyone else," Mr. Hayes said.
A committee staffer says that the Republican staffers have declined the shots but that two Democrat staffers were immunized before attending the race at Talladega last weekend.
A phone call to the committee spokesman was not returned.
— Audrey Hudson, Homeland Security reporter, The Washington Times