Incoming president Joe Biden has been lining up his nominees for Cabinet positions in the run-up to his inauguration on Wednesday, including veteran diplomat Antony Blinken for Secretary of State, former Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen for Secretary of the Treasury, and Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine to be his assistant secretary of health.
But one person who will not be working in the Biden administration? The president-elect’s daughter, Ashley Biden.
“I will not have a job with the administration.”
The 39-year-old social worker, fashion designer and community advocate said that she does not intend to play a role in her father’s administration. While speaking with former First Daughter Jenna Bush Hager on the “Today” show on Tuesday, she also said that she hopes to use her platform to advocate for social justice and mental health, as well as to push for community development and revitalization.
“I do hope to bring awareness and education to some topics, subjects that are really important,” she said.
This is a notable about-face from the political capital given to President Donald Trump’s children, as daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner, in particular, sparked controversy for their roles as special assistant and senior advisor to the president, respectively. House Democrats launched an investigation into how Ivanka and her husband were given top-level security clearances after former chief of staff John Kelly reported in 2018 that the president ordered him to approve Kushner’s security clearance. Kushner’s top-secret security clearance was later downgraded.
Granted, President-elect Biden has been attacked over his son Hunter’s finances and foreign business dealings. It was revealed last month that the Justice Department launched a tax probe involving Hunter in 2018, with the Associated Press reporting that some of the scrutiny is focusing on his past work in China.
Trump and his supporters have accused Hunter of profiting off his political connections via his father, which Ashley addressed on Tuesday. She said that the attacks on her family’s integrity have “hurt,” and cited that the online vitriol is the reason why she doesn’t have public social media accounts.
“At the end of the day, they may get it wrong, but at least I got it right, you know? At least I know the real deal,” she said. “I know the type of man my father is, and the woman my mother is, and the man my brother is.”
Ashley also confirmed the reports that First Lady Melania Trump has not invited incoming FLOTUS Jill Biden for the traditional “tea and tour” protocol that outgoing First Ladies have extended during the peaceful transition process for decades. The Trumps will skip the Inauguration on Wednesday, as well, which President-elect Biden has said is probably a “good thing.”
“No, I don’t think they’re doing the traditional protocol, which is unfortunate, but I think we’re all OK with it,” Ashley said.
The future First Daughter also played up her father’s empathy and intelligence during the “Today” show chat, lamenting that the media has played Biden up as a “gaffe machine,” and praising his devotion to family.
Watch the interview here.
And stay up-to-date on the Biden transition and the security measures in place for the inauguration with MarketWatch’s coverage here.