Ivanka and Jared register as Republicans: Now people like us "feel comfortable" being part of GOP

The longtime former Democrats claim that President Donald Trump has "broadened the reach of the Republican Party"

By Igor Derysh

Managing Editor

Published March 3, 2020 11:18AM (EST)

Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump (Getty/S)
Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump (Getty/S)

President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner have officially registered as Republicans after they were unable to vote for her father in the 2016 New York Republican primary.

Ivanka Trump told The New York Times that she changed her voter registration from Democrat to Republican so she could vote for her father in the upcoming primary. Election records reviewed by the outlet show she registered as a Republican in October, ahead of the midterms.

"I am a proud Trump Republican," she told The Times. "I believe he's broadened the reach of the Republican Party, which is really important to me."

Ivanka Trump was "viewed by some Democratic elites" as a "bridge to moderates," because she had long been a Democrat, lobbied her father to keep the United States in the Paris climate accords and focused on issues related to women in the workplace, the fawning report claimed. However, the first daughter said she finds herself on the "conservative" side of the debate today.

"I'm not going to speculate on the projections other people have cast upon me," she said. "In areas outside of my portfolio, I tend to agree more with the more conservative viewpoint more often than where the Democrats are today . . . No one person or party has a monopoly on good ideas."

Trump and Kushner, along with the president's son Eric, were unable to vote for then-candidate Donald Trump in New York's 2016 primary because they did not register as Republicans by the October 2015 deadline. No other state has such severe restrictions on primary voter eligibility.

"They were, you know, unaware of the rules and they didn't register in time," Trump told Fox News at the time. "So they feel very, very guilty. They feel very guilty."

Kushner recently revealed that he is now a member of the Republican Party, as well.

"I was not a Republican," he told campaign officials during a briefing in December, according to The Times. "Now I'm a Republican. I think the Republican Party is growing now that people like me feel comfortable being part of it."

Despite Kushner's claim, researchers have found that younger voters have left the Republican Party in droves since Trump's election. Just 34% of Generation Z and millennial voters said they would vote for Trump in a recent NPR/PBS NewsHour poll, compared to 58% who said they would "definitely" vote against him.

With her voter registration resolved, Ivanka Trump is expected to take on a more visible role in her father's re-election campaign despite having made few public appearances since she landed in the White House as a senior adviser to the president. Ivanka Trump is expected to headline a fundraising trip that will take her to Florida, Texas, New York and Oklahoma later this month, according to The Times.

She also bragged to the outlet that she could raise more money at a one-hour donor breakfast than the leading Democrats vying for her father's job.

"It's probably more," she told The Times, comparing her fundraising prowess to that of former Vice President Joe Biden. She noted that she raised $2 million in 45 minutes at a fundraising event in Houston, which she dubbed "pretty record-shattering." 

Not unlike her father, Ivanka Trump has also grown more aggressive in countering her critics on Twitter. She recently fired off a tweet criticizing the president's impeachment as "incoherent" and "ill-conceived."

"POTUS has accomplished so much and is just getting started. The best is yet to come!" she added in Trumpian fashion.

Ivanka Trump later appeared on Sean Hannity's Fox News show to slam Democrats for impeaching her father instead of praising him.

"For us not to come together as a nation and celebrate America's success is not forgivable," she lamented.

Just like her father, Ivanka has continued to earn millions from her company while serving at the White House and faces mounting lawsuits related to her business. Kushner's family company was also hit with hundreds of Baltimore city code violations after residents at their apartment complexes complained of rodent infestations, hazardous living conditions, and aggressive debt-collection tactics. After the Trump Foundation was agreed to pay $2 million to charities it bilked during Trump's campaign, Ivanka Trump and her siblings had to agree to undergo compulsory training to ensure they don't engage in similar misconduct in the future.

Many journalists and Democrats on Twitter refuted The Times' assertion that liberals had high hopes for Ivanka in her father's administration.

"The only 'liberals' who pinned their hopes on Ivanka were extremely wealthy New Yorkers," wrote Mother Jones editor Clara Jeffery. "Her fascist Barbie grift was obvious from the jump."

By Igor Derysh

Igor Derysh is Salon's managing editor. His work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald and Baltimore Sun.

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Aggregate Donald Trump Eric Trump Ivanka Trump Jared Kushner Joe Biden Politics Sean Hannity