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Ivanka Trump, elder daughter of a billionaire president, married to the son of a real estate mogul, thinks Americans want to make their own way up life’s ladder.
In an interview with Fox News’ Steve Hilton, Trump was asked about the provision of the Democrats’ “Green New Deal” that would guarantee a job to all Americans. Trump was not a fan of the idea.
“You’ve got people who will see that offer from the Democrats, from the progressive Democrats, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Here’s the “Green New Deal,” here’s a guarantee of a job and think, Yeah, that’s what I want. That’s simple,” said Hilton, asking: “What do you say to them?”
“I don’t think most Americans in their heart want to be given something,” said Trump, seemingly conflating a promise of jobs with an offer of welfare. “I’ve spent a lot of time traveling over the last four years. People want to work for what they get. I think this idea of a guaranteed minimum is not something most people want. They want the ability to be able to secure a job. They want the ability to live in a country where there’s a potential for upward mobility.”
Other Democrats have endorsed a job guarantee, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.; Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.; and Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J. A national jobs guarantee would not preclude people from taking a better job if they found it, as Trump implied by contrasting it with “upward mobility.”
Polling has found between 46 percent and 55 percent of Americans support a jobs guarantee, with support increasing when the proposed jobs are defined as “scaling up renewable energy, weatherizing homes and office buildings, developing mass transit projects and maintaining green community spaces.” A December 2018 survey found 81 percent of respondents favoring a “Green New Deal.”
Trump attended the exclusive Chapin School in Manhattan before moving on to the prestigious Choate Rosemary Hall in Connecticut and the Wharton School at Penn. She worked for her father’s real estate company after graduation and eventually launched her own fashion brand, which last year she announced she was stepping away. She also appeared on “The Apprentice,” serving as a boardroom adviser for the show’s contestant eliminations.
Filings show Trump made at least $12 million last year, including over $2 million from severance she received from the Trump Organization after she left to take her White House job. The combined income of Trump and husband Jared Kushner, who also serves as a White House adviser, was more than $82 million, mostly from real estate interests.
In her 2009 book “Trump Card,” Trump acknowledged her privilege, as detailed in a review by the New Yorker’s Jia Tolentino.
“Yes, I’ve had the great good fortune to be born into a life of wealth and privilege, with a name to match,” writes Trump. “Yes, I’ve had every opportunity, every advantage. And, yes, I’ve chosen to build my career on a foundation built by my father and grandfather.”
According to Tolentino, Trump attempts to say that everyone has advantages regardless of background, but she eventually moves on from the attempt at pitching equality. “Did I have an edge getting started in business?” she asks. “No question. But get over it. And read on.”
It has been a busy 2019 for Trump so far. During a speech to the National Governors Association at the White House Monday, the president said, “My daughter has created millions of jobs. I don’t know if anyone knows that, but she’s created millions of jobs.” (This is not true.) In January, her name was also floated as a potential new head of the World Bank, but those rumors were quashed. However, the White House did announce that she would be involved in picking the organization’s next leader.
The Trump family’s wealth started with the real estate empire of her grandfather Fred Trump and has stayed in the family. A New York Times investigation published in October 2018 found that Donald Trump had received at least $413 million from his father’s company largely through a series of tax-avoidance schemes.