Why We're Worried About Ivanka Trump

As the daughter of former president and businessman Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump has lived her life in the spotlight. Recognized around the globe, the mother-of-three gained further prominence when she joined her father in the White House during his presidency, along with her husband Jared Kushner. However, since Donald's presidency came to an end, Ivanka seems to have found herself facing more criticism than ever.

During an interview on "CBS This Morning" with Gayle King, Ivanka addressed some of the criticism leveled against her after joining her father's team in the White House. "If being complicit is wanting to be a force for good and to make a positive impact, then I'm complicit," she told King. "I don't know that the critics who may say that of me, if they found themselves in this very unique and unprecedented situation that I am now in, would do any differently than I'm doing. So I hope to make a positive impact."

From her involvement in Donald Trump's legal battles to her personal relationships and unusual requests to Secret Service agents, this is why we're worried about Ivanka Trump.

Her inauguration testimony was called into question

Donald Trump's presidential inauguration took place on January 20, 2017, and was attended by a slew of family members, including his daughter Ivanka Trump. However, it wasn't long before the event was hit by scandal, when Karl Racine, the attorney general of Washington, D.C., launched a probe into how Trump's inauguration committee spent charitable funds it had received. Per Mother Jones, Racine alleged that the committee wrongly used funds to pay for event space at Trump properties, including at the Trump International Hotel, meaning that the clan personally benefitted from money earmarked specifically for the inauguration.

Ivanka found herself drawn into the scandal when it was revealed that she may have provided false information during her deposition during the inauguration lawsuit, per Mother Jones. During the deposition, Ivanka claimed, "I really didn't have an involvement [in planning the inauguration]," via documents reviewed by Mother Jones. She further claimed that, while she may have provided her opinion when asked, she wasn't actively involved in planning any events. However, documents and emails contradicted Ivanka's deposition, seemingly showing that Donald's daughter was, in fact, very involved in planning the inauguration. Understandably, this alleged lie didn't paint Ivanka in the best light.

She was exposed for using a private email address for White House business

In March 2017, it was revealed that Donald Trump's daughter would be taking on an official role in her father's government as a federal employee of the White House. However, Ivanka faced some calamities in her new role, especially when it was uncovered that she'd used her own personal email address to conduct official White House business. The Washington Post reported that Ivanka's actions may have breached federal records rules, not to mention posing a potential security risk.

A representative from the Trump administration released a statement, via the BBC, suggesting that Ivanka had since ceased using her personal email to conduct official White House business. The statement also alleged that none of Ivanka's messages had contained any classified information, and that she simply didn't understand the White House rules regarding official correspondence.

The BBC clarified that, while White House employees are allowed to use personal email accounts for official business, they are required to preserve all government-related messages by forwarding them to an official work account within 20 days. This is due to the Presidential Records Act and Federal Records Act, which require an official public record of all government business. Whether or not Ivanka's decision to use a personal email address was a serious breach of government policy or not, it's clear that the president's daughter found herself in hot water as a result.

She reportedly made several ethics violations while in the White House

Since the Trump administration left the White House in January 2021, new details have come to light about how the famous family operated while Donald Trump was president. In an analysis of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner's earnings conducted by Crew, it was revealed that the couple's reported earnings were between $172 million and $640 million while they held positions in the White House. This was in spite of the fact that the couple refused to take salaries for their roles in the government, in an attempt to overcome allegations of nepotism. 

The publication also alleged that Kushner and Ivanka failed to divest from certain business interests, which may have conflicted with their roles in the government. And according to Crew, Ivanka may have personally benefited from her role within the Trump presidential team, particularly in acquiring a number of trademarks related to her business while working with other countries. Crew also suggested that Ivanka was embroiled in a conflict of interest when she launched the Opportunity Zones program, which provides tax incentives to investors who agree to invest in low-income communities, as her husband personally benefited from the new law. Basically, Ivanka's time in the White House wasn't all smooth sailing.

She had links to an ex-spy in the Russia scandal

Christopher Steele was in charge of the Russia desk when he worked as an intelligence officer for the British Secret Intelligence Service, and he subsequently went on to compile the infamous "Steele dossier," which made a plethora of allegations about then-president Donald Trump — including the suggestion that he'd colluded with Russia even before the election, as the country allegedly had some incriminating information about him. Somewhat surprisingly, it was revealed in 2019, via ABC News, that Ivanka Trump had actually met Steele approximately 10 years before his dossier was released.

Ivanka reportedly met Steele at a dinner in 2007, and remained in contact with the intelligence officer even after he left his role within the British Intelligence Service. Emails confirmed that the pair had planned to meet up, with a source suggesting that Ivanka and Steele did, in fact, have a meeting at Trump Tower at some point. ABC News alleged that Ivanka brokered the connection with Steele in her role as an executive vice president at the Trump Organization, in the hopes that Steele's own company, Orbis Business Intelligence, may have been able to further Trump's business interests abroad. 

Steele was able to diffuse accusations that he penned the dossier because he was biased against the Trumps, as he was able to suggest that he'd actually been friends with one of Donald's family members for years before the dossier was revealed, per ABC News.

She allegedly forbid secret service agents from using her toilets

In January 2021, The Washington Post broke some surprising news about Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner. The publication reported that the couple's Secret Service security detail had been banned from using the toilets in Ivanka and Kushner's home in Washington, D.C. Instead, they'd apparently been forced to struggle to the nearest public restroom or porta-potty, with sources revealing that the agents had even used toilets in Barack Obama and Mike Pence's homes. 

Understandably, the daily search for a toilet was unsustainable for the security agents. As a result, the government decided to rent a basement studio close to the Kushner-Trump residence, which had its own toilet, in September 2017. The rent on the studio was $3,000, and by the end of Donald Trump's time in office, the cost had amounted to more than $100,000, per The Washington Post. 

The White House initially denied reports that Ivanka and Kushner hadn't allowed their security detail to use the toilets in their home, via The Washington Post. However, a source alleged to the publication that the family had, indeed, requested that the Secret Service agents didn't enter their house. Responding to the report, a spokesperson for the Secret Service told The Washington Post, "Secret Service personnel do not request access to the facilities at private residences." They continued, "Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have not denied Secret Service personnel access to their home to include use of the restroom."

She received questionable consulting fees from her father's business

In September 2020, The New York Times reported on the state of Donald Trump's finances, including his tax returns. The publication suggested that the former president regularly expensed expensive consulting fees to unnamed sources, which in turn lowered his tax liability. The New York Times compared Trump's tax records to details Ivanka Trump had disclosed about her own finances when she started working in the White House in 2017.

According to the publication, consulting fees received by Ivanka totaling $747,622 matched payments made by Donald to an unnamed consultant. These were subsequently claimed as tax deductions, with the Trump Organization claiming the consulting fees were related to hotel business in Vancouver and Hawaii, via The New York Times. Although details of the arrangement remain unclear, The New York Times suggested that Ivanka received consulting fees for projects she had also worked on as an executive of her father's companies. If Ivanka was, in fact, earning twice for the same projects, Donald's decision to write off huge consultancy fees as business expenses for tax purposes may be questionable, via The New York Times.

She lost a lot of friends during the White House years

After taking on a high-profile role within the White House during Donald Trump's presidency, Ivanka Trump reportedly noticed some glaring changes taking place in her personal life. In November 2022, the New York Post quoted a source who suggested that Ivanka was sad that many of her friends had distanced themselves from her while she was working in politics. In fact, several former friends of the fashion designer have publicly expressed their anger and frustration at Ivanka's political leanings.

Natalie Portman revealed that she was no longer friendly with Ivanka or her husband Jared Kushner, whom the actor met while studying at Harvard, during an appearance on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." Of Kushner, Portman said, "There's not a lot funny to say about someone you were friends with becoming a supervillain." Chelsea Clinton, too, publicly distanced herself from Ivanka during an interview on "Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen." "I've not spoken to her since 2016," Clinton dished. "I have no interest in being friends with someone who is not only complicit but actively taking part in this administration's, like, everyday collision of cruelty and incompetence."

Per News.com.au, Ivanka reportedly once counted actors Blake Lively and Emmy Rossum as friends, but that all changed during the Trump presidency, too. According to the site, Lively even publicly expressed her concern over the Trump administration's approach to issues involving women, which presumably led to her cutting ties with Ivanka.

Her marriage to Jared Kushner has faced split rumors

Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner tied the knot on October 25, 2009, and have since welcomed three children together: Arabella Rose, Joseph Frederick, and Theodore James. While the pair put on a united front during their time in the White House, the couple have been plagued by split rumors since leaving their political roles. In December 2022, Radar Online reported that Trump and Kushner's relationship was in a bad place and that they were regularly arguing. The source also suggested that much of the trouble sprouted from Ivanka's father, Donald Trump. Per Radar Online's source, Kushner allegedly wanted to distance himself from Donald after he lost the presidency in 2020, and this may have created drama for Ivanka.

Page Six seemed to mirror this account of Kushner and Ivanka's marriage when they reported on a recent sighting of the couple at a yacht party that took place in Miami's Bay of Biscayne. Per the site's source, Ivanka and Kushner allegedly spent little time interacting at the party, which meant that they barely seemed like a married couple.

Meanwhile, People suggested that Ivanka and Kushner remained a solid unit, despite having gone through so much together in the preceding years. Whatever the truth of the matter is, it would seem that rumors of discord have been haunting Ivanka's marriage for some time.

She allegedly supported her father trying to overturn the election

After it was projected that Joe Biden had beaten Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, Trump vocally objected to the result, claimed that he had actually won, and even made allegations of voter fraud. In June 2022, a video deposition of Ivanka Trump was shown during congressional hearings, which were conducted by a House of Representatives select committee investigating the attack that took place on the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021. During her deposition, Ivanka claimed that she didn't support her father's accusation that fraud had been committed during the 2020 presidential election, via Reuters. However, earlier video footage of Ivanka seemed to contradict this point of view.

In June 2022, The New York Times revealed that it reviewed footage of Ivanka, which was filmed by a documentary crew in December 2020. In the clip, Ivanka reportedly suggested that her father should, indeed, legally challenge the election results, especially as she believed that the legitimacy of elections was at stake, implying that he may have actually won. Ivanka's seemingly conflicting views, both aired at different times and in different spaces, make it impossible to decipher her true feelings on the matter, which calls her credibility into question.

She's realized how 'impossible' her dad can be

Once an avid supporter of her father Donald Trump's political career, Ivanka Trump has reportedly started to distance herself from his affairs. In March 2023, a source suggested to People that Ivanka had realized that her dad could be quite difficult, which made her decide that she needed some space from him. This seemed to align with Ivanka's own statement, which she issued after Donald announced that he would be running for president again in 2024: "This time around, I am choosing to prioritize my young children and the private life we are creating as a family." She continued, "I do not plan to be involved in politics. While I will always love and support my father, going forward I will do so outside the political arena," (via People). 

The New York Times also speculated on how Ivanka might react to Donald Trump's indictment and arraignment, which sees him facing multiple charges including fraud and the mishandling of documents, especially as his legal troubles were unlikely to benefit her image in any way. For the time being, at least, Ivanka seems to have cut ties with Donald the politician.

She was forced to testify in her dad's civil fraud trial

Donald Trump faced a civil fraud lawsuit brought against him by New York Attorney General Letitia James in 2023. Prior to the trial starting, James ruled that Trump had inflated the value of his wealth and some of his assets to benefit himself in business deals and in securing loans from financial bodies, via the Associated Press

In November 2023, Ivanka Trump was forced to give testimony in her father's civil fraud trial regarding her own involvement in his business affairs, the Associated Press reported. According to the publication, Ivanka suggested that she had nothing to do with her father's personal finances, saying, "Those were not things that I was privy to." She also claimed that Donald's business ventures had all been incredibly successful.

Attorney General James appeared to take a different view from Ivanka, and told the press outside the courtroom (via the Associated Press), "This case is about fraudulent statements of financial condition that she benefited from. She was enriched. And clearly, you cannot distance yourself from that fact."

She was accused of getting extensive plastic surgery

After Ivanka Trump gave testimony in her father Donald Trump's civil fraud trial in New York City in November 2023, people started questioning her seemingly changed appearance. The Daily Mail decided to interview several plastic surgeons in an attempt to ascertain whether Ivanka may have had some work done on her face since her previous public appearances. Dr. Alexander Z. Rivkin compared photos of the designer in 2020 and in 2023, saying, "Ivanka Trump looks like she has had quite a makeover." He continued, "She seems to have added, whether with filler or implants, significant volume to her chin and jaw."

While people continue to speculate as to whether Ivanka has had plastic surgery or not, it's undeniable that Donald Trump's daughter has been an inspiration for many when it comes to getting cosmetic procedures. In September 2017, New York-based plastic surgery Dr. Norman Rowe revealed to Page Six that many clients had requested to look like Ivanka, hoping to style attributes such as their cheekbones and nose after the former White House employee. Explaining the phenomenon, Dr. Rowe told Page Six, "I never saw [anyone drawing inspiration from Ivanka's face] before the primary ... since the summer of '16 ... [it's been] maybe four a month; one a week." These procedures can cost anywhere from $30,000 to $50,000, according to Dr. Rowe, which is quite the commitment to try to look like the former president's daughter.