Leaders around the world have quickly been adjusting their approach when it comes to dealing with the Trump administration, knowing that the quickest way to the President’s ear is no longer through the State Department or other officials, but through the daughter he has an inappropriate fondness for, Ivanka.
To that end, governments and their diplomatic arms are preparing charm offensives to get in the good graces of Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner, hoping they can cultivate profitable relationships with the pair, who might then use their influence with the President on their behalf.
President Miloš Zeman of the Czech Republic, for instance, has written a letter to Ivanka he would very much like to see delivered. “We would like her to know that we are the country where she might find a surprising number of people who will treat her very, very nice. Because she’s, like, preapproved” said Czech Ambassador Hynek Kmoníček. The Czech Republic has long wanted a closer relationship with the United States and is hoping Ivanka might be their winning ticket.
The Washington Post reports that a slew of nations are jockeying for Ivanka’s goodwill.
As word has gotten around the diplomatic world about the potential return on investment in courting the first daughter, embassies have begun actively looking for ways to bring her into the fold, mulling invitations to gala events and cultural celebrations where they can establish a low-stakes, personal relationship with her.
Ivanka is seen as a valuable ally not only because of her father’s uncomfortable affection for her but also because “she is everything he is not,” says a senior Latin American diplomat to the Post.
“By all accounts, she seems to be everything that her father is not: likable, soft-spoken, and she’s not impulsive. She seems to be thinking through everything that she does.”
While it makes sense that other nations would prefer dealing with Ivanka instead of a disinterested, ornery old narcissist suffering from what appears to be early onset dementia, this presents a whole new slew of conflicts of interests for Ivanka and Jared, who have already been roundly criticized for using their positions to build her personal brand and to literally auction off visas in exchange for investments in Kushner real estate projects.
The President of the United States should not have to be approached gingerly like a tantrum-prone toddler, and foreign nations should not have to scrape before his daughter instead of engaging with the experienced men and women who have decades of experience and training in international diplomacy – and who don’t have an opportunity to personally profit from the engagement.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.