Team USA soccer star, Megan Rapinoe, has been a spokesperson for Subway since April. The sandwich company pays the soccer star to promote their sandwiches. She recently appeared in an ad campaign alongside other celebrity athletes, which has caused some controversy among Subway customers. According to at least one Subway franchise owner, the brand needs to drop Rapinoe from their roster because her presence is driving away some customers who disagree with her politics.
The 36-year-old soccer captain made headlines after Team USA won the World Cup in 2019 because she butted heads with then-President Trump. Besides her purple hair, Rapinoe is known for her outspoken liberal politics. Rapinoe appeared in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games and took a knee during the playing of the national anthem ahead of Team USA’s bronze-winning match.
After America’s women’s soccer team failed to achieve the Gold medal, former President Trump attacked Rapinoe and the rest of the women with a statement mocking the Americans.
“The woman with the purple hair played terribly and spent too much time thinking about Radical Left politics and not doing her job,” the former president said. Trump, who famously holds grudges against people who have rubbed him the wrong way, has not forgotten how Rapinoe refused to visit the “f**king White House” after Team USA won the World Cup.
Trump supporters across the United States have been refusing to patronize Subway restaurants because of its association with Rapinoe. In Wisconsin, one franchise owner arrived at work to see a handwritten note posted on the front door suggesting that all people should “Boycott Subway” until they fire Rapinoe.
“Boycott Subway until Subway fires the anti-American P.O.S. Megan Rapinoe, the creep who kneels for our beloved national anthem! Take America back from the godless reprobates!”
The Wisconsin owner said: “The ad should be pulled and done with. It gets tiring apologizing.”
Because Subway doesn’t own its 22,000 locations, these franchise owners should have a say in how the company advertises its products. The franchisees pay 4.5 percent of their revenue toward the national advertising fund. However, the corporation does not let its franchisees decide which ads are run by the brand.
In Arizona, one franchise owner wrote on the North American Association of Subway Franchisees (NAASF) blog: “Spending our money to make a political statement is completely and totally out of bounds.”
Last week, NAASF representatives passed on franchisees’ concerns about using Rapinoe in the ad campaign to senior leadership, which is led by Subway CEO John Chidsey.
“Your NAASF Board has already communicated with [Subway] leadership the concerns voiced by NAASF membership,” the group’s executive director, Illya Berecz, told franchisees, according to the letter obtained by The New York Post.
Meanwhile, a lawyer who represents several Subway franchisees told The Post, “I had a bunch of franchisees calling me on this today. They are trying to get the ads pulled.”
Do you find the Subway ads with Megan Rapinoe to be offensive? Should the sandwich company pull the ads because of the complaints?