U.S. Women’s Soccer star Megan Rapinoe claimed on Wednesday that she has been “disrespected and dismissed” because she is a woman.
Speaking at a White House event marking Equal Pay Day, Rapinoe claimed that because she is not paid as much as male soccer stars, she felt “devalued.”
“Despite all of the wins, I am still paid less than men who do the same job that I do. For each trophy — of which there are many — for each win, each tie and for each time that we play, it’s less,” she said.
Rapinoe was one of several women’s soccer players to file a gender discrimination lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation in 2019 over the league’s decision to pay male players more.
A federal judge dismissed part of the lawsuit that dealt with unequal pay, however, arguing the women’s team’s contracts are structurally different than the men’s because that is what the female players requested.
“The WNT [Women’s National Team] rejected an offer to be paid under the same pay-to-play structure as the MNT [Men’s National Team] and … the WNT was willing to forgo higher bonuses for other benefits, such as greater base compensation and the guarantee of a higher number of contracted players,” Judge Gary Klausner wrote in the ruling.
Rapinoe also hinted that she might run for president one day.
“I need a fancy presidential binder,” she said at the White House event. “Maybe one of these days.”
This isn’t the first time Rapinoe has speculated about her political ambitions.
Last May, she admitted she’s “not totally shutting the door” on a political run “but it seems wild.”
As for which office she would pursue, Rapinoe said, “President, of course. If I’m going to do it, I want the biggest, baddest post.”