"I thought it was adorable," Donald Trump tells PEOPLE of Jared Kushner's request

By Jeffrey Slonim
Updated August 20, 2009 12:45 PM

Ivanka Trump’s fiancé Jared Kushner took a chance when he asked Donald Trump – whose favorite phrase seems to be “You’re Fired!” – for his daughter’s hand in marriage.

But the old-fashioned move paid off.

“He actually did,” Donald Trump told PEOPLE Thursday when asked if Kushner had requested his permission to marry Ivanka before he proposed to her. “I thought it was adorable.”

“He’s just a sweetheart,” Trump added of his future son-in-law while at the Museum of Modern Art for the premiere of The September Issue, a documentary about the making of the 2007 September issue of Vogue magazine.

So what makes the relationship between Ivanka and Kushner, who is the publisher of the New York Observer, work? “These are two people who really like each other,” said Trump. “They love each other a lot. They love and like each other, which is the best combination.”

Another person who likes Kushner is The Donald himself. “I think he’s great,” said Trump. “I’ve known Jared for a long time. He’s a brilliant young man, and a nice person. So I’m very happy with him.”

Most importantly, daddy’s little girl is thrilled about her impending nuptials. “[Ivanka] is very happy,” said her proud father.