Given the amount of money invested in Soccer in the United States, it is certainly a disappointment that the United States will not be playing in next summer’s World Cup. Interestingly, the fallout from the team’s failure has also given us an opportunity to see just how far American politicians are from the very people to whom they are supposed to be accountable. USA Today pointed out some odd Tweets made by Congressman Brendan Boyle, a Democrat who represents Pennsylvania’s 13th Congressional District, in the wake of the United States’ unexpected loss.

 

Normally, Congressman Boyle’s Twitter feed is filled with the type of tweets one would expect from a Democratic lawman: Messages disparaging Republican President Donald Trump and typical messages pandering to identity politics. According to his Twitter feed, Congressman Boyle was educated at Notre Dame and Harvard University and—of course—unequivocally supports worker’s rights. No problems there. Congressman Boyle has represented Pennsylvania’s 13th Congressional District since 2014, a district that includes part of Philadelphia and is 87.2% White. Perhaps that explains the Congressman’s odd Tweets about football (or Soccer); few of his constituents are soccer fans!

 

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Alienating Potential Voters is Not the Smartest Thing to Do. Image Courtesy Of: https://twitter.com/repbrendanboyle?lang=en

 

His first Tweet, following the loss, was “I was really disappointed the USA men’s team didn’t qualify for the World Cup. Then I remembered I couldn’t care less about soccer”. Clearly, for anyone who understands a modicum about public policy, this was not the best thing to Tweet. When it comes from a man with a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from Harvard University, it is even more surprising. One would think that alienating any part of your constituency—in the name of sports—would not be the best course of action. What is even odder is that Mr. Boyle dug in when a user asked, rhetorically, if he did not understand the sport.

 

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An Odd Response; I Wonder How Latino Voters Feel About This. Image Courtesy Of: http://ftw.usatoday.com/2017/10/brandon-boyle-us-soccer-twitter

 

Mr. Boyle, however, was not done. He followed up with another oddly antagonistic Tweet: “Had no idea soccer fans were such snowflakes. Guys, do yourselves a favor. Watch the baseball playoffs. You’re Welcome”. The irony of a politician from the Democratic party calling others snowflakes should not be lost on anyone, and it reveals a lot about the nature of politicians in the United States.

 

That Congressman Boyle did not shy away from telling sports fans what to watch (instead of soccer) is also telling as it reveals a fascistic streak of thought. Perhaps the Congressman should be reminded that supporting worker’s rights does not mean that one cannot be—or is not—a fascist. But this is the state of politics in the United States. Politicians are so removed from the people they ostensibly represent that they believe they can say anything. After all, the 13th District is Democrat and will likely continue to be. Little of what these politicians say is genuine and often party-line rhetoric serves simply to ensure votes. And, sometimes even off-hand Tweets like these reveal a lot about the character behind the political office. While the popular narrative tells us that Democrats are “tolerant” of others, I should say that Congressman Boyle’s Tweets tell a very different story.

Here I will give a shout out to writer Brian Hickey who–intelligently–pointed out one of contradictions of this tweeting debacle: “One might think a legislator who plays the pro-immigrant card would – y’know – not spit all over the sport many immigrants love. But, nope, that’s not what happened here”. Similarly, Philadelphia soccer writer Matt Ralph pointed out that Congressman Boyle’s district is a soccer hot-bed. Representatives like Brendan Boyle show just how broken the political system has become; it is not about Left and Right at all. It is about politicians who have absolutely no concern, whatsoever, about their constituencies.

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