Politics

Ivanka Trump Gives Her Dad's Presidency a Letter Grade

In a Fox and Friends interview that aired Monday morning, Ivanka Trump was asked to give her father's presidency a letter grade. Naturally, she's an easy grader

 "Oh, an A, of course. I'm slightly biased but definitely an A," she said. "When you think about the security in this country, when you think about the policies being put in place to support the American worker, when you see what's happening in the stock market — it's thriving," Trump said. She also added that "small business owners across this country are feeling a renewed sense of optimism and vigor and spirit."

Ivanka's laundry list of accomplishments — and her brother Eric's claim that Trump has "accomplished more than any president arguably in history" in their first six months — stands in contrast to many pundits who believe Trump has gotten virtually nothing done so far (and as of June 25, just 36 percent of those polled by Gallup approved of Trump's performance).

But has Trump actually accomplished the things Ivanka is giving him credit for? A breakdown of each claim shows it's, at the very least, a little more complicated.

"The security in this country"

During his presidential run, Trump constantly tweeted exhortations for the U.S. needing to become "smart, vigilant and tough." However, it's debatable if Trump has done anything to make the country safer. In fact, he has presided over multiple international flash points that are threatening to break out into war.

Numerous publications have claimed Trump's executive orders restricting travel from Muslim-majority countries are unnecessary, and have actually made the U.S. less safe by playing into terrorists' rhetoric about a clash of civilizations. Beyond that, the first days of the Trump administration saw spikes in racial violence and anti-Semitism, with several highly-publicized attacks by right-wing terrorists

Finally, Trump has exacerbated existing conflicts abroad, ratcheting up tension with a nuclear-armed North Korea, taking military action against the Assad regime in Syria without a coherent strategy, and appearing to inflame a growing crisis between Saudi Arabia and Qatar

"Policies being put in place to support the American worker"

Ivanka didn't actually mention any of these policies, so it's not entirely clear what she's talking about. But of the many promises Trump made to ostensibly protect U.S. workers, few have come to fruition. And he's advanced a number of laws that actively endanger the safety and security of workers, including rolling back Department of Labor standards, repealing a law meant to protect federal contractors from wage theft, removing federal guidance meant to protect low-income franchise workers, and scuttling an executive order protecting LGBT workers' rights. 

Trump's promises to prevent American companies from fleeing offshore has mostly been a bust as well, including Trump's widely publicized deals with Ford and Carrier to keep jobs in the United States. Both recently revealed they'd be eliminating almost the exact same number of jobs Trump touted they'd be keeping. 

"What's happening in the stock market"

On January 19, the day before Trump's inauguration, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 19,804.72. As of June 26, it's 21,409.55. While this is a record closing, much of this growth is due to economic policies put in place by the Obama administration.

Beyond that, no less than Donald Trump himself called the 2016 gains of the stock market "a bubble," warning that if the Federal Reserve raised interest rates what would happen next would "not [be] pretty." Rates have been raised several times since then, with no ill effect on the stock market. 

"Small business owners ... are feeling a renewed sense of optimism and vigor and spirit"

This is not a measurable metric, so it's difficult to discern Ivanka's accuracy. Trump's proposed tax plan does include a major tax cut for small business owners, but the plan hasn't even made it to Congress for a preliminary vote. And Trump's first 100 days in general were deemed a "mixed bag" by small business owner groups, who want to see more action taken to repeal the Affordable Care Act. 

News reports also suggest that whatever optimism small business owners felt at the election of a president deemed "pro-business" has since leveled off thank to the uncertainty of Trump enacting his economic proposals.