This afternoon it was reported in the New York Times that daddy’s dearest daughter will become an official government employee: an unpaid adviser to her father. For all intents and purposes, Ivanka, who has shown up to a lot of meetings with foreign dignitaries, was already doing this job. Only a week ago, she moved into an office in the West Wing, and faced backlash for the questionable ethics of being an unofficial employee. (As Norm Eisen told Politico, “If she can voluntarily subject herself to the rules, she can voluntarily un-subject herself to the rules.”)
Making her role official is an attempt to sidestep this criticism. In a statement, Ivanka said, “I will instead serve as an unpaid employee in the White House office, subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees.” But this is akin to putting a Band-aid on a bullet wound. The Trump family has already ignored a host of ethical guidelines, and the new position doesn’t solve Ivanka’s particular conflict-of-interest problems; while Ivanka put her fashion and jewelry line into a trust, she still owns it.