Ivanka Trump Called Out For Hypocrisy Of White House Role
Update 4:43 pm EST:
Ivanka Trump addressed the criticisms outlined in this article shortly after it was published, as well as those from others in the media, and announced she will officially become a federal employee.
I have heard the concerns some have with my advising the president in my personal capacity while voluntarily complying with all ethics rules, and I will instead serve as an unpaid employee in the White House office, subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees.
Her official title will now be special assistant to the president.
Ivanka Trump is one of the most influential figures in the White House, in spite of the fact that she doesn't have an official role or title.
She's met with numerous world leaders and reportedly has a great deal of influence over President Trump's policy decisions.
Meanwhile, as noted above, she has no official title, and she's not been forthcoming about what her actual position is.
This is pretty hypocritical, Vox reporter Liz Plank recently pointed out, given Ivanka once ran a campaign encouraging women to reveal their job titles back in 2014.
A post for the campaign on Ivanka's website says,
Record yourself saying your extended job title, followed by your name and actual job title. Post the video to your social channels and tag a few of the women who inspire you to encourage them to follow suit. Be sure to hashtag #WomenWhoWork and tag @IvankaTrump.
This video accompanied the post:
So, since Ivanka is so enthusiastic about women sharing their job titles, perhaps she could do Americans the courtesy of sharing her own?
Some might think this is a petty issue.
But government watchdogs are actually demanding Trump give his daughter an official role, as concerns surrounding accountability and concerns over potential conflicts of interests in relation to her business activities grow.
After President Trump's inauguration, Ivanka took a formal leave of absence from her business and her father's business, but she still owns her brand and continues to benefit from it financially.
These watchdogs recently wrote a letter to White House counsel Don McGahn, which argued,
[Ivanka Trump's current role] creates a middle space that does not exist. On the one hand, her position will provide her with the privilege and opportunities for service that attach to being a White House employee. On the other hand, she remains the owner of a private business who is free from the ethics and conflicts rules that apply to all White House employees.
They have a point.
It's pretty hard to hold someone accountable for violating ethics and conflicts rules that apply to other White House employees when they aren't officially an employee.
Giving Ivanka a formal title would change this.
Ivanka has claimed she will "voluntarily" hold herself to the same rules that apply to White House employees.
But, due to the fact that Ivanka is not serving in the White House in an official or formal role, there are concerns she's not legally bound to do so.
Long story short, Ivanka should probably follow her own advice, and tell the world what her job title is.
It's only fair.