Sen. Manchin Threatens to Withhold Funding For World Cup Until Women’s Team Gets Equal Pay

P. Gardner Goldsmith | July 12, 2019
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Yellow card!

Democrat Senator from West Virginia Joe Manchin just committed two fouls and seems completely oblivious to them.

As Selwyn Duke notes for The New American, this great hero of American constitutionalism and fair dealing decided to streak onto the field and patronize fans of female sports by saying he wants to withhold federal funding for the 2026 World Cup in the US until men and women who play receive "equal pay."

Yes. This is an adult. Yes, this is a man who swore an oath to “protect and defend the US Constitution” – not US-based soccer teams.

Writes Duke:

In the wake of the U.S. women’s soccer team’s second straight World Cup championship, Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has ‘introduced a bill that would prevent any federal funds from being used toward the 2026 World Cup in the United States until the U.S. Soccer Federation agrees to provide equitable pay to the men’s and women’s national teams,’ a press release from his office explains.


How about abiding by the Constitution, the very document that created his Senate seat in the first place?

Perhaps Manchin is being misunderstood. Perhaps he only appears utterly foolish and disdainful of the so-called “rulebook” of his wondrous government. Shoot, maybe he’s “trolling” to show the absurdity of the issue.

It’s more likely that Barbra Streisand was a founding member of Led Zeppelin.

He goes on to say:

This would include any and all funds provided to host cities; participating local and state organizations; the U.S. Soccer Federation, Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF), and Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA).

Which not only reminds anyone with a scintilla of interest about the Constitution that the feds are funding municipalities contrary to the so-called “rules” of the US, but reveals that even international soccer organizations are getting American tax cash (and future taxpayer cash, thanks to the extreme immorality of deficit spending).

These would be soccer organizations connected to multi-billion-dollar income streams. FIFA, alone, brought in $4.5 billion thanks to World Cup sales.

But even if FIFA and CONCACAF and the US Soccer Federation couldn’t afford the games, there would be no enumerated “power” in the Constitution for Manchin to fund or threaten to withhold cash from the organizations. If he likes soccer, let him offer his own cash or get involved in the business, not force others to pay for it.

And that $4.5 billion for FIFA? That comes from men’s World Cup sales, which go to support all FIFA activities, as even the left-leaning Huffington Post reports.

The World Cup pays for all the 20 World Cups FIFA organizes, the under-17, under-20 men and women, club football, beach soccer all is financed by the men’s World Cup which brings directly $4.5 billion to FIFA.

Which brings us to the final point Senator Manchin’s pandering rhetoric avoids.

Economically, men’s soccer is simply more popular.

As Charles W. Cooke writes for National Review”:

(A)ccording to the openly misogynistic New York Times, the Women’s World Cup of 2011 “brought in just $5.8 million, while the men’s cup in 2014 netted $1.4 billion.” Advertisers, the Times confirms, will pay 80 times as much to cover the men’s competition as the women’s.

So, in fact, while Manchin postures and prances and does the unconstitutional kabuki dance of pandering to “feminism”, demonizing the soccer organizations, and saying he’ll make things “equal” through the force of the state, what he is really doing is not just demonizing the soccer orgs.

He’s demonizing consumers.

And this is an important economic lesson that we can dig out of Manchin’s putrid field of political offal. The fact is that what he sees as “unfairness” in pay for the women is actually a revealed consumer preference that is no different than people buying one book over another, deciding to see one film instead of another, or deciding to walk in one direction rather than the others.

What he is demonizing is freedom, which, when exercised, will not give the same economic benefits to people with different skills or natural abilities. And let’s face it, as much as progressives and SJWs try to tell people men and women are the same, they simply aren’t.

Generally, men are physically taller and more powerful. They have greater bone density. They have better overall stamina. They have superior lung capacity – even when they are the same height and weight. They are faster. They have better depth perception and reflexes. Not only was the US Women’s World Cup Soccer Team recently beaten 5-2 by a team of teenage boys under 15 years of age, the Australian Women’s National Soccer Team was beaten 7-0 by a team of teenage boys from Brasil in 2016.

As Amanda Prestigiacomo wrote at the time for DailyWire:

These Aussie women apparently never got the memo that gender is merely a construct.

And these are not “shows” where the ladies run light to let the boys win. These female athletes are so much better than many of their female cohorts, they simply can’t find competitive teams against which to scrimmage if they stay inside the women’s soccer circles.

Look, saying men are better at most sports isn’t sexist. It’s merely an acknowledgment of reality. It’s like saying that women have better senses of smell or have more nerves per square inch of skin.

And to say that consumers must be molded to fit Senator Manchin’s preferred fantasy world is not just silly. It’s unethical and authoritarian.

Not only that, should his bill pass, you can say goodbye to women’s pro soccer, because the women simply aren’t generating the revenue Manchin wants them to receive. Because consumers won’t pay that much for the sporting events. That would mean fewer opportunities for women in sports… until Manchin and his thug-like pals in politics decide to breach the Constitution again and mandate “equality” by forcing FIFA to reinstate the female teams according to their political mandates.

If Manchin wants women to earn just as much, he can start his own soccer organization.

Until then, there are penalties on the field, and he should stop playing with other people’s money.