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4/25/17

Germany: Ivanka Trump gets booed, hissed at during Berlin event – by Annie Karni

Ivanka Trump arrived in Berlin Tuesday morning armed with facts and figures to recite at what was expected to be a high-brow international summit to discuss women entrepreneurship, alongside German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But on her first international trip as an official representative of the United States, the first daughter was put on the spot about her father’s attitudes toward women, booed and hissed at by the crowd, and grilled by the moderator about what, exactly, her role is in President Donald Trump’s administration.
“You’re the first daughter of the United States, and you’re also an assistant to the president,” the moderator, WirtschaftsWoche editor-in-chief Miriam Meckel, said.

“The German audience is not that familiar with the concept of a first daughter. I’d like to ask you, what is your role, and who are you representing, your father as president of the United States, the American people, or your business?”

It was an aggressive opening for the first daughter, who was seated next to Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund and one seat down from Merkel. Queen Maxima of the Netherlands was also a participant on the W20 panel. And it appeared to put her on the spot.

She did not define what her new role as a senior White House official entailed, but said that she cared “very much about empowering women in the workplace” and defined her goal as enacting “incremental positive change. That is my goal. This is very early for me, I’m listening, learning.”

But she was booed and hissed at by the majority-women audience at the conference when she lauded her father for supporting paid leave policies. “I’m very proud of my father’s advocacy,” she said, calling him “a tremendous champion of supporting families and enabling them to thrive.”

Meckel, the moderator, pushed her to address the vocal disapproval from the audience.

“You hear the reaction from the audience,” she said. “I need to address one more point — some attitudes toward women your father has displayed might leave one questioning whether he’s such an empower-er for women.”

 She defended her father from her vantage point of loyal daughter — a familiar crouch from when she was confronted by uncomfortable questions about her father on the campaign.

A private meeting with Merkel, a privilege normally reserved for the most senior foreign representatives, was not on Ivanka Trump’s agenda.

And despite the insistence of the White House that Ivanka Trump was invited to attend the panel by Merkel in her role as a senior White House official a  German government spokesman also stressed that, contrary to reports that Merkel had personally asked Ivanka Trump to attend the conference, she was in fact invited by two women’s groups organizing the event.

“The Chancellor didn’t invite her,” spokesman Georg Streiter said during a press briefing on Monday. Streiter added that after Merkel’s “pleasant discussion” with Ivanka Trump in Washington, she signalled to the organizers that she would welcome Ivanka Trump’s participation.

Read more: Ivanka Trump gets booed, hissed at during Berlin event – POLITI

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