Senator proposes blocking men’s World Cup funds until U.S. women’s team gets equal pay

West Virginia Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin announced a bill Tuesday to withhold federal dollars for the men’s World Cup unless the U.S. women’s national soccer team receives pay equity.

Manchin’s proposed bill would deny federal funding for the men’s 2026 FIFA tournament, which the U.S. will co-host along with Canada and Mexico, unless there’s equal pay between both the men’s and women’s soccer teams.

“The clear unequitable pay between the U.S. men’s and women’s soccer teams is unacceptable and I’m glad the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team latest victory is causing public outcry,” Senator Manchin said. “They are the best in the world and deserve to be paid accordingly.”

Manchin said that his inspiration for the bill was a letter from West Virginia University (WVU) Women’s Soccer Head Coach, Nikki Izzo-Brown.

Izzo-Brown’s letter to Manchin pointed out that the women’s team makes a profit while the men, who did not qualify for the 2018 World Cup, produce a net loss.

“The inequality of pay is unjust and this wage gap with the US men’s national team has to stop,” Izzo-Brown wrote. “The women have won four titles, men none; the women’s viewership in the FIFA World Cup final outdrew the men in the United States by over three million ( men 11.4 , women 14.3).” Read more at NBCNews


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