Ivanka Trump said in an interview broadcast Wednesday that her use of a private email account for some government business is nothing like Hillary Clinton’s, insisting that ‘there’s no connection’ between the two cases.
In a ‘Good Morning America’ interview she brushed aside concerns about her legal exposure in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s expansive Russia probe, and said she ‘frequently’ disagrees with her father on policy issues – but defended his action in the face of ‘heartbreaking’ photos of migrants at the U.S.-Mesico border.
The first daughter has come under fire for some emails she sent and received during the early tumultuous weeks of the administration and the weeks leading up to Inauguration Day.
President Donald Trump spent nearly two years blasting Clinton, his 2016 opponent, for a far broader arrangement that used a private home-brew email server in her basement for tens of thousands of emails during the four years she was secretary of state.
‘All of my emails are stored and preserved. There were no deletions. There is no attempt to hide,’ Ivanka said. ‘There’s no equivalency to what my father’s spoken about.’
Ivanka Trump says her use of a private email account for some government business is nothing like Hillary Clinton’s
The president’s elder daughter told ‘Good Morning America’ that while images of migrants storming the border with their children are ‘heartbreaking,’ there are also ‘people in the caravan who are not so innocent’
She also confirmed that none of the emails that have generated snickers and finger-wagging from congressional Democrats this month contained classified information.
Clinton maintained the same thing for months in 2016. But 110 examples were later discovered of material sitting on her unsecured server, open to prying eyes, that was classified when she sent it.
Ivanka said commingling personal and government material wasn’t strictly prohibited, citing legal advice about an easy and common way to remedy it.
‘There is no restriction of using personal email,’ she said. ‘In fact, we’re instructed that if we receive an email to our personal account that could relate to government work, you simply just forward it to your government account so it can be archived.’
The president has defended his daughter, pointing out that while Clinton and her attorneys deleted more than 33,000 emails – messages they deemed ‘personal’ – before eventually turning the rest over to State Department record-keepers, Ivanka’s have already been made part of the government’s records.
Congressional Democrats are crying foul, suggesting that they’ll launch an investigation in 2019 after they take over control of the House of Representatives.
Ivanka may also face scrutiny from Special Counsel Robert Mueller as he moves forward with a Russia probe that Ivanka said he should wrap up soon.
‘I think it should reach its conclusion,’ she said. ‘I think it’s been a long time that this has been ongoing, but I want it to be done in a way in which nobody could question that it was hurried or rushed.’
But ‘we’re well beyond that point,’ she added.
The first daughter insisted, however, that she isn’t worried about how Mueller’s findings might impact her.
‘I know the facts as they relate to me and my family, and so I have nothing to be concerned about,’ she said.
As one of two members of the president’s family who advises him day-to-day – the other is her husband, Jared Kushner – Ivanka said her father always ‘knows exactly where I stand on any issue,’ and she ‘frequently’ disagrees with him in private.
But in the face of ‘heartbreaking’ images of Central American migrants desperately trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border amid a hail of tear-gas canisters, she said she’s standing behind her dad.
‘I think, like any other person with a heart, it’s devastating to see the images and seeing children put at risk. Running towards the border is heartbreaking,’ Ivanka said.
‘But there are people in the caravan who are not so innocent … [the president] has to protect our country’s security.’
Ivanka’s lawyer Abbe Lowell has already dismissed comparisons between her email situation and Hillary Clinton’s.
‘Ms. Trump did not create a private server in her house or office, no classified information was ever included, the account was never transferred at [the] Trump Organization, and no emails were ever deleted,’ Lowell’s spokesman Peter Mirijanian told reporters last week.
Clinton similarly denied having classified emails on her private server.
‘I did not send classified material, and I did not receive any material that was marked or designated classified,’ she said on the campaign trail in August 2015.
White House ethics officials learned of Ivanka Trump’s personal email use when reviewing emails gathered last fall by five Cabinet agencies to respond to a public records lawsuit, sources familiar with the matter told The Post.
Trump said she was not familiar with all the rules.
The private email account came from a domain she shares with Kushner.
They set up personal emails with the domain ‘ijkfamily.com’ through a Microsoft system in December 2016, after Trump won the presidency and the couple was preparing to move to Washington D.C.