Former President Trump on Thursday criticized an old target — the U.S. women’s national soccer team — by saying players would have won the gold medal and not the bronze at the Olympics if they weren’t “woke.”
“Woke means you lose, everything that is woke goes bad, and our soccer team certainly has,” Trump said in a statement issued by his Save America PAC.
“If our soccer team, headed by a radical group of Leftist Maniacs, wasn’t woke, they would have won the Gold Medal instead of the Bronze,” he argued.
The women’s team took third place and the bronze medal in Tokyo after defeating Australia 4-3 on Thursday.
They were knocked out of contention for a gold medal after losing to Canada 1-0 earlier in the week.
Trump has repeatedly targeted the women’s national team for abuse, and players have fired back at the president.
Things grew especially heated in 2019 as the team worked its way toward eventually winning the women’s World Cup. Star player Megan Rapinoe, asked if she was excited about going to the White House if the team won, said ahead of the tournament, “I’m not going to the f—— White House.”
— Eight by Eight (@8by8mag) June 25, 2019
Trump responded on Twitter, which has since blocked him from using the platform, saying, “Megan should win before she talks.”
Trump has repeatedly picked fights with politically minded athletes, making Colin Kaepernick a major target when the then-San Francisco 49ers star took a knee to protest racial injustice.
Trump on Thursday returned to that theme, criticizing players for kneeling during the anthem and saying that while there were “a few Patriots standing,” they “they need more than that respecting our Country and National Anthem.”
“They should replace the wokesters with Patriots and start winning again,” he added.
The former commander in chief specifically singled out Rapinoe without mentioning her by name, writing, “The woman with the purple hair played terribly and spends too much time thinking about Radical Left politics and not doing her job!”
Rapinoe, who has previously called herself a “walking protest” to Trump’s policies, helped the U.S. reach the Olympic podium on Thursday, scoring two goals in addition to the two made by Carli Lloyd in their match against Australia.
Despite not winning first place, team captain Becky Sauerbrunn said from Tokyo Thursday, “That bronze means so much.”
“It feels like we really had to earn that thing,” she added, according to The New York Times. “And we’re very proud of it.”
However, Trump and others on the right have condemned women’s national team players for using their platform to advance their movement to secure equal pay.
Trump following the team’s loss to Sweden in its opening match of the Tokyo Olympics told a crowd of his supporters gathered at a rally in Phoenix that “wokeism makes you lose.”
“The U.S. women’s soccer team is a very good example of what’s going on,” he said at the time, prompting boos from the crowd.
Via The Hill