- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 10, 2019

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Wednesday said if elected president he would take executive action to force the U.S. Soccer Federation to pay men and women equally, if Congress doesn’t act.

He said he would insist that Congress amend the Amateur Sports Act to require equal pay for men and women “in all of our national sports teams.”

“And if they didn’t do it, I’d use an executive order to have the Treasury Department enforce on the U.S. Soccer Federation — [because] they’re tax-exempt, and they’re discriminating, in effect, against women in pay,” Mr. de Blasio said on CNN’s “New Day.”

“That should be stopped through the Treasury Department’s power,” he said. “I would do that as president through executive order.”

Mr. de Blasio was speaking as his city prepared to host a parade to celebrate the U.S. women’s soccer team’s recent World Cup win.



The team sued the U.S. Soccer Federation in March on gender discrimination grounds, saying members of the women’s team are paid less than members of the U.S. men’s team for doing substantially similar work.

“God bless the men, but the women’s team won,” Mr. de Blasio said.

The federation has denied the claims, saying in a court filing in May that the pay difference is “based on differences in aggregate revenue generated by the different teams and/or any other factor other than sex.”

Megan Rapinoe, one of the team co-captains, had flatly declared prior to their victory that she would not visit the White House if they won and that she doubted they would be invited.

President Trump, who offered congratulations on Sunday after the team’s win, had said Ms. Rapinoe should “WIN first before she TALKS!” and that he was inviting the team, “win or lose.”

“I don’t blame them for not going to the White House,” Mr. de Blasio said.

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer on Tuesday said Ms. Rapinoe had accepted an invitation to visit Capitol Hill.

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