A panel discussion on women’s empowerment at the W-20 summit saw Ivanka Trump booed while attempting to defend her father’s record on women’s rights.
“That is something I’m very proud of my father’s advocacy, long before he came into the presidency, he championed this in the primaries. He’s been a tremendous champion of supporting families and enabling them to thrive,” Ivanka Trump said before the crowd began negatively reacting.
Citing the audience’s reactions, the panel’s moderator — WirtschaftsWoche editor-in-chief Miriam Meckel — questioned Donald Trump’s alleged role as an “empowerer of women.”
Trump responded, “I’ve certainly heard the criticism from the media, and that’s been perpetuated, but I know from personal experience, and I think the thousands of women who have worked with and for my father for decades when he was in the private sector are a testament to his belief and solid conviction in the potential of women and their ability to do the job as well as any man.”
W-20 is a summit of G-20 countries aimed at promoting women’s workforce participation and equality. One of eight panel participants, Trump joined German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Queen Màxima of the Netherlands and International Monetary Fund director Christine Lagarde.
Trump was also grilled by Meckel on exactly what her role in the White House entails.
Meckel asked, “You’re the first daughter of the United States, and you’re also an assistant to the president. The German audience is not that familiar with the concept of a first daughter. I’d like to ask you, what is your role, and who are you representing, your father as president of the United States, the American people, or your business?”
“Certainly not the latter,” Ivanka Trump said. “I’m rather unfamiliar with this role as well…It has been a little under 100 days and it has just been a remarkable and incredible journey.”
She did not define what her new role as a senior White House official entailed, but said that she cared “very much about empowering women in the workplace” and defined her goal as enacting “incremental positive change. That is my goal. This is very early for me, I’m listening, learning.”
Shechet cites a quote from Ivanka Trump’s book The Trump Card that “dodge the obvious answer to her success — lots and lots of family money — by creatively reframing her privileges as obstacles.”
The passage reads:
When Ivanka was a kid, she got frustrated because she couldn’t set up a lemonade stand in Trump Tower. “We had no such advantages,” she writes, meaning, in this case, an ordinary home on an ordinary street. She and her brothers finally tried to sell lemonade at their summer place in Connecticut, but their neighborhood was so ritzy that there was no foot traffic. “As good fortune would have it, we had a bodyguard that summer,” she writes. They persuaded their bodyguard to buy lemonade, and then their driver, and then the maids, who “dug deep for their spare change.” The lesson, she says, is that the kids “made the best of a bad situation.