Biden thanked the four-time championship women’s basketball team for being an inspiration to women and girls around the world, saying it was important because ‘until they see it, till they watch, it becomes real.’
‘That’s why we have a female vice president,’ he added, saying he expects ‘we’re going to have some presidents pretty soon.’
Biden was in a jovial, relaxed mood as he praised the basketball team, who stood behind him, wearing face masks as he honored them during an event at the White House. The president has been dealing with the Taliban take over of Afghanistan and a revolt by moderate Democrats against his expansive $3.5 trillion budget plan on Capitol Hill.
But he was in a jokey mood with the Seattle Storm, telling them: ”I may need work after this. I’d make a good ball boy.’
President Joe Biden poses with the Seattle Storm after their 2020 WNBA Championship win at the White House
President Biden speaks with point guard Sue Bird
Biden thanked the Seattle Storm for being an inspiration to women around the world and noted he has a female VP, Kamala Harris
He also praised the social activism of the women’s basketball league.
The WNBA dedicated its 2020 season to Breonna Taylor and the Say Her Name movement, which raises awareness for black female victims of police violence. Taylor was killed by police during a botched raid on her Kentucky home.
‘What makes this team remarkable is they don’t just win games they change lives, encouraging people to get vaccinated so we can beat this pandemic speaking out and standing up for racial justice and voting rights,’ he said.
The team also played a factor in the Georgia Senate special election in January, when Democrat Raphael Warnock defeated incumbent Republican Senator Kelly Loeffler, helping Democrats take control of the Senate.
The WNBC players union, during the campaign, called on Loeffler to sell her shares of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream.
When she didn’t, female players, inspired by Seattle Storm point guard Sue Bird, wore ‘Vote Warnock’ T-shirts to games, helping raise his profile.
Biden also praised the women ownership of the team – majority owners Ginny Gilder, Lisa Brummel and Dawn Trudeau, who were in attendance.
And he noted that he had co-captain Sue Bird’s fiancé, soccer star Megan Rapinoe, at the White House earlier this year for an equal pay event.
‘Between the two of them they share Olympic medals, World Cup titles, the WNBA championship,’ Biden said of the couple. ‘And above all, they define integrity and character. As President, as an American, I’m proud of how they represented us and they represent the best of what America stands for.’
Bird, Jewell Loyd, and Breanna Stewart gave Biden a team jersey with the number 46 on it. Biden is the 46th president.
President Joe Biden arrives with Ginny Gilder, Seattle Storm co-owner, and Crystal Langhorne, former player, to honor the championship team at the White House
Biden is given a team jersey from Jewell Loyd (C), and Breanna Stewart (R)
The president also gave shout outs to the women in his family and on his staff who played basketball.
‘One of our granddaughters Maisie is a great athlete loves to play basketball,’ he said.
He then pointed to longtime aide Annie Tomasini, who serves as director of Oval Office operations, and domestic policy adviser Susan Rice for their athletic prowess.
Owner Ginny Gilder thanked the president but also praised her team for its social activism.
‘They use their play on the court and their eloquence off, not merely to demand change, but to generate engagement and cause change, they channeled their emotion into action. Establishing say her name as the centerpiece of the entire season to fight for justice for Brianna Taylor, bolstering voter registration, across the country, altering the power balance in the US Senate, by helping to elect two new senators from the state of Georgia,’ she noted.