Ivanka Trump Defends Maternity Leave Proposal in Combative Interview

The candidate's daughter praised his treatment of women in the workplace.

ByABC News
September 15, 2016, 2:16 PM

— -- In a surprisingly testy exchange with Cosmopolitan magazine, Ivanka Trump, the daughter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, defended her father's recently announced maternity leave and child care proposals while seeking to redirect some questions about whether the plan would benefit same-sex couples.

Speaking with writer Prachi Gupta, Ivanka Trump detailed the campaign's proposals -- which include six months of paid maternity leave, tax deductions for child care expenses and the creation of savings accounts for dependent care -- which the campaign released on Tuesday.

When Gupta asked whether the benefits would be extended to same-sex couples and questioned how the nominee's prior statements about women -- such as in 2004 when he called pregnancy an "inconvenient thing for a business" -- reconcile with his current stance, Ivanka Trump accused her of injecting her own beliefs into the interview.

"I think that you have a lot of negativity in these questions, and I think my father has put forth a very comprehensive and really revolutionary plan to deal with a lot of issues," she said. "I don't know how useful it is to spend too much time with you on this if you're going to make a comment like that."

The candidate's daughter appeared to try to redirect some of the interviewer's questions about whether same-sex couples would benefit by getting paternity leave or leave following adoption of a child. She said the intent of the plan is to assist mothers after giving birth.

"The original intention of the plan is to help mothers in recovery in the immediate aftermath of childbirth," she said. "The plan, right now, is focusing on mothers, whether they be in same-sex marriages or not."

Ivanka Trump went on to promote her father's business record, saying he "has been a great advocate for women in the workforce" and questioned whether he had actually made the remark that Gupta quoted about pregnancy.

After Gupta noted it was a direct quote from an interview the businessman conducted with NBC in 2004, Ivanka Trump seemed to take umbrage and to try to refocus the interview.

"There's plenty of time for you to editorialize around this, but I think he put forth a really incredible plan that has pushed the boundaries of what anyone else is talking about," said Trump.

A question about the financial implications of the plan followed, but Ivanka Trump abruptly cut short the interview.

"I'm going to jump off, I have to run. I apologize," she said.

Ivanka Trump later explained her point of view in a series of tweets Thursday afternoon. Tweeting at Cosmopolitan's Twitter account she wrote, "your readers do & should care about issues impacting women & children. Keep the focus where it belongs—advocating change."

Donald Trump previously joked on the campaign trail about Ivanka's quick return to work following the birth of her son in late March, saying he wouldn't fire her after she "did a good job" and returned quickly.

"You know, she had a baby like five days ago," the candidate said at a rally in New York with his daughter. "So I should not say Ivanka, you're fired, right? I promise."

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