- Conway said in her new book “Here’s the Deal” that America is ready for a female president.
- She cited Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds and Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee as possible options.
- Ivanka Trump could have a future in politics “if she wants,” Conway said.
Kellyanne Conway was the first woman to lead a US presidential campaign to victory as Donald Trump’s campaign manager in 2016.
That campaign she led bested Democrat Hillary Clinton who was close to reaching the title of first woman president.
Still, Conway thinks America was ready for a female president even in 2016 — “just not this one,” meaning Clinton, she writes in her book out Tuesday, called “Here’s the Deal.” In an interview with Insider on Wednesday, Conway said she could envision “any number” of Republican women leading from the Oval Office.
“I think you have to look at Gov. Kim Reynolds of Iowa, you have to look at Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee,” she said. “There are any number of Republican senators, governors — maybe a businesswoman here or there, who knows.”
“I can tell you one person it’s not going to be is Kamala Harris,” she added, referring to the current vice president.
Before joining the Trump campaign, Conway had developed an expertise in female voting patterns through her polling company. She also explored issues women voters cared about in her 2010 book “What Women Really Want.”
She told Insider that she thought women felt a heavier burden than men did when considering the question of whether to seek the White House.
“It is a tremendous sacrifice of privacy, of time, of energy, of money,” she said. “I think the considerations set for women are always different, whether everybody wants to admit it and acknowledge it or not.”
Throughout her book, Conway writes about the personal sacrifices she made for her career as a wife and mother when she went to the Trump White House to become a counselor to the president. She ultimately decided to leave the White House a few months before the 2020 election to spend more time with her children, she wrote. Conway remains in Trump’s inner circle, telling Insider she and the former president last spoke on Tuesday.
Asked whether she saw a political future for Trump’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, Conway replied, “If she wants.”
“Ivanka is very talented, brilliant woman who has succeeded at everything she has ever tried,” she said, referring to Ivanka Trump’s fashion line, her work as an executive in the Trump Organization, and then as a senior advisor to her father when he was president.
“She is a naturally talented, very kind, and focused professional who sets out to do a task and gets it done,” said Conway.
Conway had less kind things to say in her book about Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump’s husband, calling him “shrewd and calculating.” But she said that for Ivanka Trump one of the factors that is likely to weigh on her if she wants to go into politics is factoring in that she has young children and that she has seen “how unfair and how evil detractors can be.”
“There is a calculus that every man and woman must make,” Conway said, “Does the risk outweigh the rewards? Is the opportunity cost too great? Is there too much of a personal sacrifice involved? And I think, professionally speaking, women often think about that in a different way and come up with a different set of considerations than do men.”