New Book Claims Trump Wanted Ivanka As 2016 Running Mate
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump repeatedly pushed for his daughter Ivanka Trump to be his running mate, according to a new book by former Paul Manafort associate Rick Gates.
From The Washington Post:
“I think it should be Ivanka. What about Ivanka as my VP?” Trump asked the assembled group, according to a new book by his former deputy campaign manager Rick Gates set to be published Oct. 13.
Trump added: “She’s bright, she’s smart, she’s beautiful, and the people would love her!”
In Gates’s telling, Trump’s suggestion of naming to the ticket his then-34-year-old daughter — a fashion and real estate executive who had never held elected office — was no passing fancy.
- Trump brought up Ivanka’s name repeatedly over several weeks in an attempt to sell campaign staff on the idea, according to Gates' book — “Wicked Game: An Insider’s Story on How Trump Won, Mueller Failed, and America Lost” — leading Trump’s team to poll the idea on two occasions.
- It was Ivanka who ultimately ended the discussion, he wrote, telling her father it would be a bad idea to choose her as his vice president. Trump eventually selected Mike Pence.
- Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the Trump campaign, said the account was untrue and that no such polling ever took place.
In an interview last week, Gates said he is not certain Trump would actually have gone through with making his daughter his running mate.
But he said he included the anecdote in his new book, first reported by Bloomberg News, as a prime example of the kind of unconventional thinking he believes made Trump an appealing candidate.
- The Post noted about Gates' history with the Trump campaign and administration:
After working on the 2016 campaign and helping organize the inauguration, Gates pleaded guilty in February 2018 to conspiracy against the United States and lying to federal investigators in relation to lobbying work he and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort had done in Ukraine before joining Trump’s team.
After entering his plea, he became one of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s most important cooperating witnesses, spending hundreds of hours in interviews for multiple investigations and testifying at trial against both his longtime former boss, Manafort, and former Trump confidante Roger Stone.