During a meeting at the G20 conference in Germany over the weekend, in which 19 heads of state met to discuss how to help Africans improve their lives at home, Ivanka Trump took her father’s seat while our president skipped the discussion.
According to the White House, Ivanka “briefly joined the main table when the President had to step out.” But according to an official that was also in the room, the first daughter has taken Trump’s place on several occasions.
So why are people outraged?
Ivanka, who, as far as we know, has no foreign policy or diplomatic experience, could have easily been replaced by a number of other top American politicians attending the conference, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster.
Although it is not unusual for the President to step out during meetings, their replacement is usually one with both experience and political standing. It is unheard of for a family member, especially one that is an unpaid assistant to the president and has unknown political responsibilities, to ever step in.
Trump’s choice to seat his daughter at the meeting is causing the American public and foreign politicians to react across the globe.
Svetlana Lukash, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s representative to the G20, confirmed Ivanka’s presence in a photo on Twitter, which was later deleted:
Members of the American public took to Twitter to express their feelings:
I didn't vote for Ivanka. Neither did anyone. This is not how women of integrity want to see women represented in politics. This is corrupt https://t.co/WXqVMdEnz8
— Xeni Jardin (@xeni) July 8, 2017
Trump's style is more Uzbek…that of an authoritarian backwater, not a superpower
— Anne Applebaum (@anneapplebaum) July 8, 2017
— Sarah✨ (@Sarah_Alden83) July 7, 2017
Had Michelle Obama (more qualified than Ivanka) filled Barack's seat at the G-20, the media and the GOP would be calling for impeachment.
— Terrell J. Starr (@Russian_Starr) July 8, 2017
— ᖇ૯ძ ᑭคɿՈ੮૯Ր ???? (@Redpainter1) July 8, 2017