The Slatest

Trump’s Family Really Has a Long History of Giving Money to, Praising, and Endorsing Democrats  

The Trumps on Wednesday in Cleveland.

Jabin Botsford/Washington Post via Getty Images

The part of Melania Trump speechwriter Meredith McIver’s statement that got the most attention Wednesday was, not surprisingly, the part where McIver admitted to having copied some of Melania’s RNC speech from Michelle Obama. But in the course of explaining this, McIver noted something else that’s interesting, writing that “a person [Melania] has always liked is Michelle Obama.” Melania Trump’s husband, of course, has said that Michelle Obama’s husband is the “worst president ever” and may be a jihadist double agent who wants Americans murdered. Perhaps they agree to disagree when it comes to the Obama family.


Melania’s apparent admiration for Michelle Obama isn’t the only indication that some members of Trump’s family view both the current president and the current Democratic nominee favorably. (Trump, of course, has his own history of being friendly with Democrats.) Per, the following members of Trump’s immediate family have donated the following amounts to Hillary Clinton and PACs associated with her:


  • Melania Trump: $6,100
  • Donald Trump Jr.: $6,100
  • Ivanka Trump: $4,400
  • Jared Kushner (Ivanka Trump’s husband): $10,000

While those four individuals have also given to Republican figures, that’s a total of $26,600 for Hillary, given as late as 2007. There’s also the matter of the newspaper Jared Kushner owns, the New York Observer, having endorsed Barack Obama in 2008 over John McCain, praising the then-Illinois senator’s commitment to “the power of ideas, ethics and decency.” Former Observer staffers I spoke to did not recall Kushner pushing specifically for the endorsement, but as the paper’s owner he had final say over what it published. Kushner also has his own long history of Democratic giving, in addition to the Hillary donation noted above, to figures such as senators and former senators Cory Booker, Joe Lieberman, Chuck Schumer, Jon Corzine, and Bob Menendez. (Kushner is even listed as having given $1,000 to then–New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg in 1992, when he would have been 11 years old.) The Observer’s endorsements have since tilted right—it went for Mitt Romney in 2012 and this year was a no-brainer—but Kushner gave $20,000 to two Democratic groups as recently as 2014.

As it happens, Meredith McIver is herself a registered Democrat, as are two lawyers (Alan Garten and Michael Cohen) who often act as Trump spokesmen. In admiring a major Democratic figure, it would seem, Melania Trump has a lot of company in Donald Trump’s inner circle.

Read more Slate coverage of the 2016 campaign.