Ivanka Trump Draws Groans in Berlin for Defending Her Father

  • First daughter was attending event on women’s empowerment
  • Trump in Germany at invitation of Chancellor Angela Merkel

Ivanka Trump: The Quiet Power Behind the President

Ivanka Trump encountered a rough reception from an audience at a women’s empowerment event in Berlin after calling her father “a tremendous champion of supporting families.”

The president’s daughter drew groans as she made the remark during a panel discussion tied to Germany’s presidency of the Group of 20, where she shared the stage with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde. The exchange on Tuesday prompted a follow-up question from the moderator about President Donald Trump’s attitude to women.

“I certainly heard the criticism from the media, and that’s been perpetuated,” Trump told the audience. “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 testament to his belief and solid conviction in the potential of women and their ability to do the job as well as any man.”

The encounter illustrates the pitfalls Trump’s eldest daughter faces in reaching out to a broader audience, this one focused on global women’s issues and economic development, as she assumes the role of presidential adviser. While Merkel invited Trump to Germany, polls suggest that most Germans take a dim view of the administration’s policies.

Merkel Feminist?

The crowd reacted with laughter when the German chancellor shrugged in response to a question about whether she’s a feminist.

“The history of feminism is one where there are similarities to where I am and also differences -- and I don’t want to take on a title that I don’t have,” Merkel said.

The German leader first encountered Ivanka Trump when she visited the White House last month and has begun a quiet effort to reach out to her as a back-channel in an effort to influence and moderate Trump’s policies.

Ivanka Trump later told reporters in Berlin that the moderator’s line of questioning was “fine.”

“Politics is politics, as I’m learning,” she said. “There are many different viewpoints and people hold different opinions and perspectives. Ultimately, actions are what matter.”

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