With Nov. 8 election looming, Ivanka Trump campaigns locally for father

Nominee’s daughter engages in discussion, holds Q & A for supporters at Lismore Hotel


Photo by Gabriel Lagarde

Ivanka Trump interacts with supporters after the conclusion of Thursday’s rally. Roughly 300 people visited the Lismore Hotel in downtown Eau Claire to hear Trump speak on behalf of her father, Republican nominee Donald Trump.

Story by Gabriel Lagarde, News Editor

In an attempt to solidify her father’s position in Wisconsin, a prominent swing-state, Ivanka Trump held a rally at the Lismore Hotel in downtown Eau Claire to garner local support in preparation for the Nov. 8 election.

Ivanka joined Rachel Duffy on stage and spoke at length on a number of political issues to a crowd of roughly 300 people. From the onset, Ivanka juxtaposed warm, intimate impressions of her father with explanations regarding the Republican nominee’s policies.

But, she also navigated the discussion into a subject many pundits believe the GOP has categorically failed to reach during this election: women.

“All of us women are working very hard to create lives that are meaning and purpose driven,” she said, “whether you’re a stay at home parent or when you’re unmarried in the corporate world or anywhere in between.”

More specifically, Ivanka said a common issue in the American economy is unfair pressures placed on women engaged in childcare. She said motherhood is the greatest determining factor in gender wage inequality and pointed to a potential Trump-backed income tax modification that would take childcare costs into account.

Ivanka also expressed criticism for the current education model starting with the public school system, a problem she said her father planned to address with a $30 billion block grant to encourage school growth, diversification and vocational training.

“It’s so critical that our kids in this next generation are able to compete in their communities, in our world at large,” she said, “and very sadly the American education system has fallen really far down on the echelon when you look at how we’re not competitive with the rest of the world.”

Ivanka characterized college students as an age group that is becoming more pessimistic of their futures. She said young adults are being taken advantage financially by postsecondary institutions that, along with creating debilitating debt, also fail to provide the jobs and opportunities students should expect.

“The universities themselves are not being held accountable,” she said. “There’s no transparency. There is no correlation between tuition and ethicacy of their programs. It’s really a perfect storm and its not working. An overhaul of higher education is critical.”

Echoing her father’s statements on the matter, she also promoted reducing regulations and taxes on businesses, both large-corporations and small businesses.

Ivanka addressed the controversies surrounding Trump, painting the issue as one that reflects his brutally honest approach to politics and a personality that isn’t given to pandering.

“My father doesn’t do status quo so well. He’s not overly politically correct and now he’s a politician, so there’s a different expectation,” she said. “But he doesn’t know how to roll that way. He doesn’t know how to be anything but himself.”

Bill Ingram, the Republican candidate running for the 91st State Assembly seat against incumbent Dana Wachs this election, said his admiration for the GOP candidate predates the current election.

He said the values he shares with Trump are the basis for his unwavering support despite a deeply divided GOP party, a situation that has led many prominent conservative politicians to turn their backs on the presidential nominee.

“(Trump has a) lot of the same basic principles,” Ingram said. “It wasn’t the talk-around-in circles like the politicians do.”

As for Trump’s controversial statements in the closing minutes of the final presidential debate, Ingram said he understands Trump’s position that, in the event the Republican nominee loses, he will wait and see the results of the election before determining whether he will concede to his opponent.

“If there is some legitimate reason why you think that there’s something wrong, you contest it,” Ingram said. “I respect Trump for saying that ‘Well, I’m not going to give in right away. Let’s just see how this plays out.’ There is so much distrust with the voting system.”

Ingram said he believes Hillary Clinton, if posed the same question when voter fraud may tip a close, highly scrutinized election, would have given the same answer as Trump under those circumstances.

Hannah Hoffmann, a first-year organizational communications student said she disagreed with the severity of the backlash against Trump’s comments, but his history of vulgar statements may  hurt his own campaign.

“I can understand how some of the things he said are crude or rude, especially against women,” Hoffmann said. “As a girl, myself, I don’t really take offense to that because a lot of that is just talk. I mean, who doesn’t say that anymore?”

Spencer Nickel, a freshman marketing student, said Trump represents a new, intriguing alternative to traditional politicians, but also acknowledged that it would do well for Trump to be more tactful in how he engages issues in the future.

“He’s a complete outsider and I think the nation needs more a doer than just an (idealist),” he said.

Mackenzie Morrow, a freshman nursing student, said, in terms of health care coverage, many elements of modern care victimizes workers to support less-contributing members of society.

“I don’t agree with the Obamacare, and I like how he’s going to reform that,” she said. “I don’t like how the working class have to pay so many taxes for people that don’t work as hard, to get the equal care.”