Appearing on CBS this morning, US Women’s soccer co-captain Megan Rapinoe said she was “shocked, to be honest, very shocked, and of course disappointed in this. I didn’t feel like the ruling really captured the heart of what we’re after.”
The Us Women’s national team sought $66 million in damages under the Equal Pay Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Speaking to Tony Dokoupil, Rapinoe said “If we were under the men’s contract – which for the record we asked to be under the men’s contract, it was repeatedly refused to us, not only in the structure but in the total compensation – if we were under that contract, we would, you know, earn at least three times higher than we have.
“The argument that we’ve earned more over the course of the time we’re talking about than the men’s team really misses the whole point.” Rapinoe added “We’ve won two World Cups, and we’ve won basically every game that we’ve played, darn near. So, to have that compared in that way and sort of missing the fact that we’ve outperformed the men’s team, just to say that we earned a little bit more money, I feel like really misses the heart of the gender discrimination suit that we brought against the federation.”
Tony Dokoupil then asked Rapinoe, “The judge is saying that the women could have negotiated a different contract but chose not to, and the men negotiated the one that they did. So, you can’t now go back and say, ‘Hey, we wish we had done it differently.’ That’s his position. What’s your response to that?”
Rapinoe responded “As I’m sure many women who have been in our position can sympathize with, we did ask for the same contract; we asked for the same amount of money, and [we were] repeatedly, and in no uncertain terms, told that was not going to be possible. So, for the ruling to sort of imply that we were peachy-keen with the original deal that we got and now that we’re understanding that we could have had more money and so we’re going back on it, is very frustrating for us.
“At the time, we felt like we negotiated the best deal that we were offered. But at the time it was clear as well that the money that we were going to be paid, or the money that we could even negotiate with, was going to be far less than what was being offered to the men,” she said.