Politics

Controversy Over Ivanka Sitting In For Father At G20

| by David Bonner
Ivanka TrumpIvanka Trump

Controversy is swirling around Ivanka Trump for sitting in for President Donald Trump at the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg.

She took her father's seat on July 8 at a working session on "Partnership with Africa, Migration and Health," reports The Washington Post.

A member of the Russian delegation posted a picture on Twitter, showing the first daughter seated between British Prime Minister Theresa May and Chinese President Xi Jinping, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel one seat away.

According to her spokesperson, she “briefly joined the main table when the President had to step out.”

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Although she reportedly did not speak at the session, critics doubt her qualifications to represent the United States at a high-level event.

New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof's comment provides a representative example: "Ivanka fills in for her dad beside Xi Jinping. To me, it feels banana-republicky for the US to be represented by an inexperienced daughter."

As an adviser to her father, and as the wife of Senior Adviser Jared Kushner, she has already been frequently criticized for blurring the line between family and political affairs in the Trump administration.

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However, despite her official role as an adviser, she told an interviewer on "Fox and Friends" that she tries not to get involved in politics. "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," she said. "Throughout this process I have been working closely and in good faith with the White House counsel and my personal counsel to address the unprecedented nature of my role."

In an interview with The Post, she added: “I am not sort of trying to selectively curate information that will lead him to agree with me."

The G20 annual summits have been held since 2008, in which "heads of state and government traditionally focus on issues relating to global economic growth, international trade and financial market regulation."

The official G20 website provides additional details as follows:

The G20 finance ministers and central bank governors began meeting regularly in 1999. Other issues of global significance are often closely linked with economic questions. Examples include climate change, development policy, labour market and employment policy, the spread of digital technology and, topically, counter-terrorism. The range of issues now considered by the G20 thus makes for a broad agenda.

Since the global financial crisis, the G20 states have been working to strengthen the resilience of the global financial system and to improve the regulation and supervision of financial market participants, including what is known as the shadow banking system. The aim is to ensure that no financial market, financial market participant or financial product remains unsupervised. Tax payers should never again have to foot the bill for bailing out financial market participants.

Sources: The Washington Post, G20 / Photo credit: usbotschaftberlin/Flickr, Getty Images via The Guardian, AP via The Guardian

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