Ivanka Trump is making all of the moves to suggest she is taking on the role of First Lady in lieu of Melania for her father’s upcoming presidency.
Ivanka and husband Jared Kushner have already organized a residence for themselves and their children in Washington D.C., have apparently been scoping out local schools for those children, and Ivanka has been making waves commenting on things that she wants to focus on while Trump is in office.
But what gives Ivanka the impression that she has a solid platform to voice and work on her interests for the nation? First lady, of course. According to many accounts, Ivanka has also already been discussing child care reform with members of Congress behind the scenes. It was previously reported that she was seeking advice from Dina Powell of Goldman Sacs about empowering women in the workforce.
What has really tipped people off however about how Ivanka will likely be filling in more permanently as first lady, was Donald Trump’s comments on Fox & Friends:
‘Ivanka, the other day, spoke to [Michelle Obama]. The conversation was going to be a quick conversation – it lasted an hour.’
While Michelle Obama and Melania Trump have met as well, it was highly publicized and consistently largely of a tour within the White House. Following this tour, the women reconvened with their husbands, and that was pretty much the end of it.
It has already been noted that Melania Trump will be remaining in New York for the time being, allegedly just so their son Barron (10) can finish out the school year. However, this has sparked huge controversy, given the costs to taxpayers for additional security and disruption in a heavily occupied and important section of New York City. It also incites criticism as it furthers concerns of Americans that Melania is highly indifferent to her husband’s new role and is in some ways, unwilling to satisfy what is expected of her.
Ivanka’s husband Jared has already been selected publicly by Donald Trump to work as a Senior Adviser for him. Ivanka has, to date, used her husband’s new position as an excuse for the move and released a statement indicating that:
‘[I] plan to take time to settle our young children into their new home and schools.’
Ivanka Trump on the campaign trail was not playing housewife or stay at home mother for Kushner and their children. Ivanka spoke at a number of events and via interviews for her father throughout the campaign, and is credited often with having a much keener insight into the workings of Washington than he does.
While unorthodox, there have been presidents in the past who have not had a wife to take on the role of First Lady. Widowed Presidents Jefferson, Tyler, Jackson and Van Buren had daughters, daughter-in-laws or nieces fill the role. Similarly, Zachary Taylor’s wife was critically ill and so his daughter filled in. Along those same lines, Buchanan was unwed and so his niece managed the responsibilities.
Ivanka and Melania Trump are a bit of a different situation, though. Donald Trump has been married (three times in fact), and his wife is alive and healthy. So in some respects, should Ivanka take on the full responsibility for the full term, it would be unprecedented.
Regardless of whether Ivanka takes on the role, some Republicans are saying that she, along with her husband and older brother Donald Jr., hold more weight than any Cabinet nominees, Congress, or the House to incoming President Trump.
Feature Image via Getty Images/Drew Angerer.