Publisher’s note: Michael D’Antonio is the author of the book “Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success” and co-author, with Peter Eisner, of the book “High Crimes: The Corruption, Impunity, and Impeachment of Donald Trump“. The opinions expressed in this comment belong solely to its author. See more opinions here.
(CNN) — Ivanka Trump’s recent eight-hour testimony before the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on Capitol Hill by her father’s supporters was perfectly “on the mark,” experts say. in marketing, for your personal image. Based on what she said, she may also have increased the legal threat facing the former president and further tarnished his legacy. She certainly added a new element to the long examination of a strained family dynamic.
It is notable that Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner chose to willingly cooperate with the House committee examining the violent attempt to stop the certification of Trump’s loss to Joe Biden in the 2020 election. This choice saved them from the possibility to be subpoenaed and forced to decide whether to testify under threat of contempt citation.
Although nothing has been revealed about Ivanka’s testimony, the mere fact that the brand appeared as perhaps the most important of the three highest level alliesl from the former president to assist in the investigation. The second was Trump’s former chief of staff, Mark Meadows, who briefly cooperated and then quit. Y the third was Kushner, who also worked at the White House but was not in Washington on the day of the riots. He did, however, give testimony that a commission member called “really valuable“.
Others close to Trump, including former aide Steve Bannon, White House deputy chief of staff Dan Scavino and former trade adviser Peter Navarro, have chosen to fight the commission’s effort to have them testify, with Trump himself going to court. the courts in an unsuccessful attempt to prevent the White House records from being released. Bannon is expected to stand trial in July for challenge the commission’s subpoena. And the House voted Wednesday to recommend that Scavino and Navarro be referred to the Justice Department. on criminal charges of contempt of Congress.
Ivanka testified Tuesday for two hours longer than her husband, and as someone who was in the Oval Office on Jan. 6, she could have offered concrete recollections of the events. Commission members are particularly interested in any discussion of Donald Trump’s tweet posted at 2:28 p.m. chastising Vice President Mike Pence for not supporting the plan to block the certification of Biden’s election victory. They are also curious about her father’s planning and mood that day.
It’s hard to imagine anyone in the world being able to better assess Trump’s mood than his daughter. The Trumps long operated her business as a close family unit, which meant she worked directly with him. She seemed to enjoy unusual latitude when it came to establishing an independent identity.
While her adult siblings rarely appeared in the press as they focused intensely on the family real estate empire, Ivanka built an eponymous fashion line which started with jewelry priced up to $25,000.
As the face of his company, he forged a refined and polished image compared to his father’s, and enjoyed access to certain high-society precincts. where he was rejected.
But it turned out that the high-priced jewelry business had been captured by brands like Cartier and Tiffany. Ivanka hit the mass market with affordable yet stylish clothing and shoes that were embraced by working women. She became a woman of the people, popular for her approachable elegance, achieved when she became a mother of three children and avoided the controversies of her father.
Early in her high-profile political life, she tried, as The New Yorker put it at the time, to “float…immaculate” during her father’s gruesome 2016 campaign. She emphasized that she was “a daughter, not a clone“, adding: “of course, daughters often do not agree with things that their fathers say.” Then, when the White House absorbed their attention, Ivanka’s brand was closed and its remaining products were sold at a discount .
Despite her efforts to stay somewhat apart from her father, he chose her, and not any of his adult children, for a high-level position in the White House. (As she told a reporter, he loved all of her children, but described her as “one and only” among them. He also reportedly called her “Baby.”)
At first, he openly broke up with his father in the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville in 2017 and in the controversial candidacy of Roy Moore, who faced allegations of sexual misconduct, for the United States Senate representing Alabama. However, he gradually faded from public view to the point where, in 2019, a CNN headline asked: “What is Ivanka Trump doing?“.
What he is doing by cooperating with the January 6 commission is re-establishing himself as a figure independent of his father and willing to respond to a legitimate query. This may be due to a reported “breakup” with her father, which Washingtonian magazine attributes to the events of January 6. She may also be driven by the knowledge, at the age of 40, that she must forge a life after Washington. So far she has been frustrated in at least one area, high societywhere she has struggled to be accepted.
How will the former president react to his choice to go his own way, even if it risks hurting him? Considering her respect for the power of image-making, and that she is the one he calls “baby”, he is likely to let her get away with it. And since she has always been your adored girla, he might even be happy for her if he helps her reach her goal of rejoining the social elite.