Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta at UFC 129
The UFC has been trying for years to get mixed martial arts sanctioned in the state of New York. In fact, it is the last bastion in the U.S. to refuse sanctioning.
The promotion has gone on significant PR and educational campaigns in New York, commissioned fiscal impact studies, held press conferences, lobbied politicians; you name it, the UFC has tried just about everything to gain legalization for MMA in the state.
But year after year, sanctioning has failed in the legislative process. Most people believe that it has been politicians scared off by the violence of the sport that is the primary factor causing difficulty in legalization in New York. UFC president Dana White has a different take on the situation.
He says that there are “union idiots” that head organizations such as the Culinary Union that are using their members’ dues to fight the UFC’s attempts in New York. He adds that it’s not because they necessarily oppose MMA, but because they have a beef with UFC co-owners Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta and the way they run their “other” business, Station Casinos.