Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump: A Closer Look at Their One-Time Friendship
"There's nothing skin-deep about Ivanka," Chelsea Clinton once said of her friend
Against the odds, Ivanka Trump, 36, and Chelsea Clinton, 38, had developed a friendship over the years. Although they kept their relationship largely private, the two women hung out at the Glamour Women of the Year awards in November 2014, where they took several smiling photos together (see left). In June, Ivanka quoted Chelsea on Twitter, using the hashag #wisewords.
The feeling was mutual. In a February 2015 interview with Vogue magazine, Chelsea had nothing but high praise for her pal.
“She’s always aware of everyone around her and ensuring that everyone is enjoying the moment,” the former First Daughter said of the future First Daughter at the time. “It’s an awareness that in some ways reminds me of my dad, and his ability to increase the joy of the room. There’s nothing skin-deep about Ivanka.”
“And I think that’s a real tribute to her,” Chelsea added, “because certainly anyone as gorgeous as she is could have probably gone quite far being skin-deep.”
That was then. One brutally personal presidential campaign—and a rocky first year of Trump’s presidency—later, Chelsea suggests now that things have cooled off between the two girlfriends. She told Stephen Colbert on March 5 that she and Ivanka have “not spoken… in a long time.”
“It’s clear that she has supported policies and decisions that I don’t agree with,” Chelsea said. Asked if she can still pick up the phone and call Ivanka—to ask her to stop her father from nuclear war with North Korea, Colbert cracked—Chelsea replied: “I certainly am just really sad that we’re at a point in time … where we have a president who has such callous disregard for thoughtful, coherent, expert-advised foreign policy. [It] is something I would hope, regardless of where we sit on the political spectrum, we would agree on.”
Their friendship may no longer be as close, but the two women still share a unique understanding of the other’s life. Emily Heil, co-author of The Washington Post‘s Reliable Source column, told CNN in Aug. 2015: “There’s so much that they understand about each other. If there’s anyone who understands what Chelsea Clinton has been through, it is Ivanka Trump.”
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So what exactly do Chelsea and Ivanka have in common? Here are five fun facts you should know.
1. They both know what it’s like to grow up in the public eye.
Chelsea, of course, grew up in the White House as the nation’s First Daughter. Despite her parents’ best efforts to protect her from the press, Chelsea faced intense media scrutiny, especially during her early teen years. Meanwhile in Manhattan, Ivanka found her place among New York’s most elite social circles as the daughter of one of the world’s wealthiest and most well-known real estate moguls.
2. They both married men of the Jewish faith.
Chelsea, a Methodist, married husband Marc Mezvinsky, who is Jewish, in 2010 in an interfaith ceremony. Ivanka converted to Judaism before marrying husband Jared Kushner in 2009.
“They have been on a double date with their husbands,” noted The Washington Post‘s Heil.
3. They’re both new moms.
Chelsea and her husband welcomed their first child, daughter Charlotte, in September 2014. Ivanka and her husband, who share a daughter, Arabella Rose, 4, welcomed their second child, son Joseph Frederick, in October 2013. (Are playdates next?)
4. They’re both very family-oriented, with major roles in their family businesses.
Ivanka has appeared on her dad’s NBC reality series, The Apprentice, and is also a top executive at the Trump Organization. Chelsea, meanwhile, serves as the vice chair of the Clinton Foundation and also has a prominent role at the Clinton Global Initiative. Both loyal daughters have also been active in their respective parents’ presidential campaigns.
5. They both live in Manhattan.
Never underestimate the power of a short commute when it comes to maintaining friendships.
6. They’re both pregnant!
Chelsea and Ivanka are both balancing their parents’ booming campaigns with growing their own families. Both announced pregnancies late last year – Ivanka’s third, Chelsea’s second. Chelsea is due this summer, while Ivanka is set to welcome her third child to the family any day now.
7. They’ve both campaigned for their parents.
Both women have stumped for their parents throughout the past year. Ivanka introduced her father when he launched his presidential bid last June, and she later joined him in New Hampshire and South Carolina. Chelsea’s been on the trail in Iowa, Missouri, Utah, North Carolina, Florida, Minnesota, Nebraska, Michigan and more.
8. They’re both in their 30’s.
Another reason the two are friends? They’re close in age – Chelsea is 36 and Ivanka is 34.
9. They both have elite degrees.
Chelsea and Ivanka likely never have to “dumb it down” when they’re hanging out: They both attended some of the country’s most selective universities. Ivanka started out her college years at Georgetown before transferring to University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, where she graduated with a B.S. in Economics. Chelsea graduated from Stanford with a degree in history and later completed master’s programs at both the University of Oxford in England and Columbia University.