Why Chelsea Clinton Ended Her Friendship With Ivanka Trump

Everyone loves a story of unexpected friendship. And that’s why so many people were blown away by the unexpected friendship between Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump.

Unfortunately, that friendship did not survive. But what caused them to split apart, and what does the future hold for these young women? Here is the full story of why Chelsea Clinton ended her friendship with Ivanka Trump.

Chelsea and Ivanka’s friendship blossoms

What do we know about the way their friendship blossomed? Believe it or not, it all started with a simple nod and a couple of words on Instagram.

There is a particular bit of wisdom that Chelsea Clinton likes to say during speeches. The quote? “Life’s not about what happens to you, it’s about with what you do with what happens to you.”

When Ivanka Trump heard this, she wrote a complimentary reaction to the quote on Twitter: “Well said, @ChelseaClinton.”

While this was the first the public really noticed of their friendship, it goes back just a bit further. Earlier that year, Ivanka told Vogue that “there is nothing skin-deep about Ivanka” and, much like Bill Clinton, Ivanka has “an ability to increase the joy of the room.”

For now, both Chelsea and Ivanka seemed to have nothing but compliments for each other.

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Chelsea and Ivanka balance politics and friendship

The Clintons and the Trumps are some of the most famous political families in the world. This leads many to ask a simple question: how could politics not get in the way of their friendship?

According to Ivanka Trump, they simple avoided the issue whenever possible. In the lead-up to the 2016 election, Ivanka told Fox News, “We’re not the candidates. We’re the children of the candidates, and we both respect our parents. We never talked about politics before this campaign, and I think it’s probably a good topic to avoid talking about now.”

This is a noble sentiment. Unfortunately, politics were always destined to come between the two women.

Ivanka claims they would remain friends after the election

The big test for their friendship was Donald Trump’s electoral victory in 2016. At the time, Ivanka was optimistic that their friendship would survive.

In an interview with 20/20 in early 2017, Ivanka said, “She’s a very good friend of mine. She’s been a friend of mine long before the campaign, [and] of course will be a friend of mine after. I haven’t spoken about the specific challenges about this next chapter with her just yet, but I intend to.”

It sounds like Ivanka had the best intentions to remain friends with Chelsea. Unfortunately, that was not enough. 

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Chelsea and Ivanka tried to protect Malia Obama from the media

You might expect Chelsea and Ivanka to be political opposites in most matters. However, there is one unexpected subject that really brought them together: Malia Obama.

Malia has been the subject of intense media scrutiny, and that includes viral videos of her making out at football games and blowing smoke rings. This brought a lot of online criticism, and both Chelsea and Ivanka rushed to shut it down.

On Twitter, Ivanka kept it simple. She wrote, “Malia Obama should be allowed the same privacy as her school aged peers. She is a young adult and private citizen, and should be OFF limits.”

Chelsea echoed this. On Twitter, she wrote, “Malia Obama’s private life, as a young woman, a college student, a private citizen, should not be your clickbait. Be better.”

While it’s tough to scope out the exact timeline of their friendship, this incident proved that as of late 2017, both women were still seeing eye to eye.

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Chelsea starts to criticize Ivanka publicly

Unfortunately, things had definitely cooled down between the women by the following year. In an interview in March 2018, Stephen Colbert asked Chelsea directly if it was acceptable to criticize Ivanka Trump for the decisions of her father and his administration.

With no hesitation, Chelsea replied, “I think anyone who works for the president should expect to be scrutinized for whatever decisions not only he or she is making, but whatever decisions the White House is making on any given day.”

Taken by itself, this comment may seem like an anomaly. But in an October 2020 interview with Bravo, Chelsea claims she hasn’t spoken to Ivanka “since 2016.” This makes it sound like their friendship has been functionally dead for years.

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Chelsea says she doesn’t want to be friends with Ivanka anymore

In that same Bravo interview, Chelsea really took the gloves off. And when it came to discussing Ivanka, she was refreshingly blunt.

According to Chelsea, “I don’t think [Ivanka and President Donald Trump] are the same by any standard. But I think she’s more than complicit. I don’t want to be friends with someone like that.”

It sounds as if Chelsea now fully sees Ivanka as being responsible for not speaking out or otherwise opposing her father and his administration. But has the door completely closed on their one-time friendship?

Chelsea and Ivanka’s uncertain future

It’s impossible to know what the exact future holds for Chelsea and Ivanka. But if Donald Trump should lose the 2020 election, it is possible that the two may reconcile and once again enjoy a friendship free of politics.

In a world where Michelle Obama and George W. Bush can be good friends, we can only hope these two young women are able to once again bridge the gap that has divided them for so long.

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