Since President Trump won the 2016 election, his daughter Ivanka has come under increased scrutiny, with critics taking aim at the process of her security clearance, her use of private emails, and the unconventional role she plays in the White House. But her opinions about her father’s actions largely remain unknown.
In The Atlantic, Elaina Plott writes about Ivanka Trump’s carefully cultivated image, the mystery surrounding her and the impact the election has had on her brand.
While Plott did not speak to Ivanka on the record, she did interview President Trump. He revealed that he considered naming his daughter to run the World Bank and said she would be “hard to beat” if she ever chose to run for president.
Plott told CBSN that Ivanka and President Trump’s mutual affection has always been obvious. During the campaign, she was able to distance herself from some of his more divisive rhetoric. But the idea of Ivanka as a moderating force on her father is “starting to dissolve.”
“It was not until she actually joined the White House that people started to sort of see this codification of sorts of her devotion to him beyond the role as a daughter. It started to become more akin to somebody who aligns herself with his policy agenda,” Plott said.
In her reporting, Plott describes how Ivanka failed to convince her father to stay in the. After that, she decided to focus on her own agenda.
“She kind of regrouped after that and said to herself, ‘OK, I’m going to focus on a very specific set of uncontroversial issues and that way if people want to attack me, I can say that this is what I’ve worked on, you can judge me based on that,'” Platt said.
That’s a departure from her husband Jared Kushner, who has been involved in a wide range of projects and policy decisions, much to the dismay of former chief of staff John Kelly. By keeping a relatively low profile, Ivanka’s true feelings have been hard to surmise. For example, Plott describes how inside Ivanka’s all-white office, she had a seemingly out-of-place book on the Burning Man festival.
“Ivanka’s whole brand her entire life has been based around this ideal of her of someone who is perfect,” Plott said. “Burning Man is kind of the antithesis of that. So I lay that out for the reader to kind of say, this is why this woman is a cipher. She’s very difficult to understand in terms of intuiting whether there’s an inner life there.”