The President of the United States of America on Saturday conducted a conference call with all major sports league in the U.S. with one exception - the NWSL, reported by the Daily Mail's Nikki Schwab.
Donald Trump's long-standing feud with women's football players continued, and for everyone that follows the NWSL or the USWNT team, no one was surprised. NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB and PGA commissioners were all invited. Somewhat surprisingly, WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert, LPGA's Michael Whan and MLS's Don Garber also got invites. Also included were UFC and NASCAR, which probably speak to Trump's supporters base, and WWE, which is more akin to Broadway than sport. But the invite was not extended for the NWSL.
"These are all the great leaders of sport," Trump said of those on the call during his now-daily COVID-19 press conference on Saturday afternoon.
"I want fans back in the arenas. … And the fans want to be back too; they want to see basketball and baseball and football and hockey."
The President's feud with USWNT players reached its peak over the summer when USWNT won the FIFA Women's World Cup. Megan Rapinoe had admitted her anthem protests were in part an "F you" to Trump, who in turn said such actions were inappropriate. The two then bickered on Twitter about a White House invite.
But during a time like this, was Trump right to leave NWSL out of this conference call? What was he hoping to achieve with this decision? Isn't this serving the presidency that, you only get help if you're "nice" to the President? Is that the way the President wants to move forward?
During this call, the discussion was based on around the sporting world's response to COVID-19. A White House spokesman Judd Deere said,
"Today, President Donald J. Trump spoke by telephone with commissioners of major league sports to discuss the all-of-America response to COVID-19,"
"The President recognized the good work being done by many teams and players to care for their communities, workforces and fan bases across the nation. The commissioners thanked President Trump for his national leadership and for his interest in the sports industry. President Trump encouraged them to continue to support their fellow Americans during this challenging time."
From the sounds of things, the NWSL didn't miss much as it wasn't anything groundbreaking, and I am sure NWSL commissioner Lisa Baird had much more important things to do. But with this step from the President, I am sure this feud will only get worse.
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