Here’s How Ivanka Trump Has Responded to Donald Trump’s Scandals
The Trumps are, without question, one of the most talked-about families in the world. And they are often at the center of drama, whether it’s political, financial, or on their Twitter feeds. Since her father has been president, Ivanka Trump has taken on a prominent role in his administration.
Some view her as a moderating force for Trump. Others feel she’s complicit in her father’s controversial administrative policies. So far, she’s been one of his most vocal supporters when he faces controversy. But she’s also shown she’s willing to speak her mind when she doesn’t agree with her father’s policies or political allies.
Here are all the ways Ivanka has responded to the drama in Trump’s White House, including her insensitive Twitter photo (page 8) and what she had to say about the allegations of Russian collusion (page 11).
1. Comey as you are
In May 2017, Trump shocked everyone when he abruptly fired FBI Director James Comey. The move called into question whether he was acting impulsively, or attempting to obstruct justice.
Up until that point, reports had frequently surfaced that Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, had attempted to appeal to her father’s better angels. But where Comey was concerned, she decided to let the chips fall where they did — into utter chaos. According to the Washington Post, Ivanka “did not try to intervene” where Trump’s decision to fire Comey was concerned.
After the former FBI director testified on Capitol Hill, she made the media rounds as a surrogate for her family. Ivanka told Fox & Friends that her father felt “vindicated” and “incredibly optimistic” with regard to Comey’s testimony. And she gave no indication that she was at all concerned with the firing or the aftermath that ensued.
Next: How did Ivanka feel about Trump’s jaw-dropping Access Hollywood tape?
2. Ivanka dismissed her dad’s biggest campaign controversy
In October 2016, footage from an Access Hollywood segment on Trump before he was a presidential candidate was leaked to the press. In the video, The Apprentice star bragged about his prowess with women, telling then-host Billy Bush that he often felt inclined to grab women “by the p****.”
The video went viral, and called into question Trump’s treatment of women in general. It wasn’t the first time his comments about the opposite sex had raised eyebrows, though. In fact, Trump had gone on the record making some controversial comments about his own daughter’s sex appeal. Ivanka, for her part, doesn’t seem to mind her father’s attitude toward women.
Next: Has Ivanka changed her mind about her dad’s behavior toward women?
3. Ivanka doubled down on supporting her dad after the Access Hollywood backlash
When Fast Company asked Ivanka about the comments caught on the Access Hollywood tape, she doubled down on her support for him. She said, “The greatest comfort I have is the fact that I know my father. Most of the people who write about him don’t. I do. So that gives me an ability to shrug off the things that I read about him that are wrong.”
In an interview with NBC News, which aired Feb. 25, 2018, Trump again offered her support for her father. When asked about the misconduct allegations against him, she stated that she felt the question was inappropriate. But she also stated that she felt he is right to deny the allegations. “I believe my father,” Trump said. “I know my father. So I think I have that right as a daughter to believe my father.”
Next: Ivanka’s response to Hurricane Maria wasn’t quite as controversial as her father’s.
4. In the eye of a hurricane
When Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in the fall of 2017, the government’s response was widely criticized. And when Trump responded to the controversial way his administration had handled the hurricane, he lashed out and placed the blame on the Puerto Ricans.
While her father was raging at the mayor of San Juan, and claiming that the hurricane wasn’t a “real catastrophe,” Ivanka tried a more supportive approach. On Sept. 20, 2017, she tweeted, “We are with you all the way, Puerto Rico.” However, her sentiments, apparently, only went so far.
5. Ivanka did what she could to silence her father’s critics
Ivanka said nothing else about the relief efforts in Puerto Rico. And in 2018, she later allegedly butted heads with a celebrity chef who had beef with Trump’s response to the natural disaster. José Andrés traveled to Puerto Rico to feed more than three million survivors during the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. And he was vocal with his criticism of Trump.
Andrés was initially invited to attend an event at Washington D.C.’s Café Milano in January 2018. But he says he was asked to leave because his presence “made Ivanka uncomfortable.”
Next: Ivanka wasn’t afraid to go against her father’s word where this controversial figure was concerned.
6. Ivanka said “No Moore” during Alabama’s special election
Trump has a long history of befriending controversial figures. But he created an especially big stir when he backed Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore in 2017. Moore had been accused of sexually harassing and assaulting numerous young girls. But Trump didn’t back down from supporting the controversial candidate — he told reporters he believed Moore’s denial.
Ivanka often keeps quiet about her father’s more controversial political dealings. So it was surprising when she spoke out against Moore days later. In November, the Associated Press asked Ivanka about Moore’s history. She was firm in her response.
She told the AP, “There’s a special place in hell for people who prey on children. I’ve yet to see a valid explanation and I have no reason to doubt the victims’ accounts.” According to numerous reports, the president wasn’t happy that Ivanka spoke out against Moore.
Next: Ivanka only saw one side to the Charlottesville controversy.
7. Strong words for white supremacists
In August 2017, the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Va. shocked the nation. But it became even more controversial after President Trump weighed in on the events. He said he condemned white supremacy, and then told reporters that there were “very fine” people marching in the rally, and both sides were to blame for the violence. Many saw that as yet another example of Trump bowing to white supremacists, and were outraged.
Despite her father’s remarks, Ivanka was clear where she stood when she tweeted about the events. On Aug. 13, 2017, she tweeted, “There should be no place in society for racism, white supremacy and neo-nazis. We must all come together as Americans — and be one country UNITED. #Charlottesville.”
Though her statement was clear, some felt that it was too little, too late. Civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson replied to Ivanka’s tweet with a simple request: “Tell your father.”
Next: Ivanka was accused of being tone deaf for her response to this 2017 controversy.
8. Let them eat cake
In his first weeks in office, Trump tried to follow through on one of his biggest campaign promises. On Jan. 27, 2017, He signed an executive order effectively banning visitors and immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries. Chaos ensued, as protestors flocked to airports and thousands of travelers were stuck in legal limbo. The outcry was swift and thunderous — in fact, it seemed like it was all anyone could talk about.
That is, except for Ivanka. She made no comment in support or disapproval of the highly controversial law. Instead, she ignored the commotion entirely. On Jan. 29, 2017, she shared an image of herself and her husband, Jared Kushner, smiling and posing together in formal wear.
9. She let her photo op speak for her
Many viewed Ivanka’s lack of response to the Muslim ban as a response nonetheless — and a tone-deaf one, at that. Activist Cole Ledford tweeted a scathing response to her photo: “Thousands of families are being ripped apart because of your father but that’s a cute dress. Have fun at your party!”
Others began responding to her tweet with a tongue-in-cheek hashtag — #LetThemEatCake. According to Vanity Fair, Ivanka felt “terrible” for the poorly timed photo op. But there was no word on how she felt about the Marie Antoinette comparisons.
Next: Ivanka was at the center of this Trump family media drama.
10. Off the rack
In January 2017, shortly after Trump’s inauguration, word got out that Nordstrom would stop carrying Ivanka’s fashion line. Some viewed the move as political, while others assumed it had more to do with her brand’s sales revenue.
Whatever the reason, the president was not happy with Nordstrom’s decision. On Feb. 2, 2017, he tweeted from his personal account, “My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person — always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!”
Then, the official POTUS Twitter account retweeted his complaint. Many felt his attack on the retailer crossed ethical lines. Trump’s team jumped in to defend his tweets. And eventually, Ivanka herself responded to the controversy. Well, sort of.
On Feb. 3, 2017, Ivanka’s Senior Director of Marketing, Rosemary K. Young, released the following statement:
The Ivanka Trump brand continues to expand across categories and distribution with increased customer support, leading us to experience significant year-over-year revenue growth in 2016. We believe that the strength of a brand is measured not only by the profits it generates, but the integrity it maintains. The women behind the brand represent a diverse group of professionals and we are proud to say that the Ivanka Trump brand continues to embody the principles upon which it was founded. It is a company built to inspire women with solution-oriented offerings, created to celebrate and service the many aspects of their lives.
Ivanka, however, never responded directly to the controversy that arose after her father tweeted his support for her.
Next: Can Ivanka escape her father’s biggest scandal yet?
11. The Russian connection
Trump hasn’t been able to escape the cloud that Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election has cast over his presidency. But he’s tried, keeping up a constant battle cry of “Fake news,” and “No collusion!”
From Donald Trump Jr.’s emails with WikiLeaks to Kushner’s covert connections to Russian operatives, his family has also come under close scrutiny. Thus far, Ivanka has not been a huge point of interest in the media’s analysis of the investigation.
Unlike some of Trump’s other controversies, the stakes are high for Ivanka where Russia is concerned. And in January 2018, news surfaced that a Russian lawyer said she spoke with Ivanka directly following the now-infamous June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower. And that could indicate that Ivanka herself had more to do with the Trump family’s biggest scandal than many previously assumed.
But despite the intense scrutiny over the Trump/Russia connection, Ivanka has remained firmly on her family’s side. In a Feb. 25, 2018 interview, she reiterated the Trump team’s main talking points. Trump told NBC News, “Consistently we have said no collusion. And we believe that Mueller will do his work … and reach that same conclusion.”
Follow Katherine Webb on Twitter @prufrox.
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