When George Burnett first set up shop in Vernal, Utah he knew he had to find away to connect with his adopted community if his custom seat cover business was going to survive.
So, armed with a sandwich board emblazoned with the phrase "Honk If You (Heart) Drilling!," Burnett took to the corner of 500 East and Main Street and began his one-man crusade to boost the spirit of a community that was getting its first glimpse of another oil and gas bust.
Fast-forward nearly five years and Burnett - now a local celebrity for his tireless support of the Uintah Basin's energy industry - has launched a new business that's earning rave reviews just weeks after opening its doors.
But there is one thing about Burnett's latest venture that's left some folks with a bitter taste in their mouths.
"I'm very open about it, very public about it, that I'm going to charge them a little bit more, and I have liberals come in and pay the extra dollar surcharge," Burnett said, referring to his unique pricing structure.
Yep, Burnett, the diehard supporter of domestic energy and longtime health food fan, charges those who identify themselves as liberals one dollar more for their drinks. The money, along with any tips received, is donated to conservative causes like The Heritage Foundation.
"And actually all three liberals have been happy to pay it," Burnett said.
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