Citing an upcoming book by former Trump deputy campaign chair Rick Gates, “Wicked Game,” that will be published October 13, The Post reported that during discussions about selecting a running mate, then-Republican presidential candidate Trump said to a group of top campaign aides, “I think it should be Ivanka. What about Ivanka as my VP?”
“She’s bright, she’s smart, she’s beautiful, and the people would love her!,” he added, according to the newspaper.
The presidential candidate was so keen to the idea of Ivanka as a vice presidential pick and “cool to other options, including his eventual selection of then-Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, that his team polled the idea twice,” The Washington Post reported. Ivanka told her father it was not a good idea and Trump chose Pence after the then-governor gave a “vicious and extended monologue” about former President Bill Clinton and Trump’s 2016 rival Hillary Clinton at a breakfast event.
Trump 2020 communications director Tim Murtaugh told CNN Monday, “This is not true and there was never any such poll.”
Ivanka, who serves as a senior adviser to her father in the White House, has been a prominent fixture during her father’s political career. She introduced him when he announced his presidential campaign in June 2015 and is campaigning vigorously for his reelection.
Trump, in turn, has often praised what he sees as his daughter’s political talent, suggesting in August that his daughter would be a better White House candidate than California Sen. Kamala Harris, calling the Democratic vice presidential nominee “incompetent.”
“I want to see the first woman president also, but I don’t want to see a woman president get in to that position the way she’d do it, and she’s not competent, she’s not competent,” he said during a rally in Londonderry, New Hampshire. “They’re all saying, ‘We want Ivanka.’ I don’t blame you.”
This story has been updated to include response from the Trump campaign.
CNN’s Kate Bennett contributed to this report.