Friday, October 28, 2016
Ivanka Trump at Florida Synagogue: My Father Called Before Jewish High Holidays and Said ‘You Better Pray Hard for Me’
Ivanka Trump — the Jewish daughter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump — told a synagogue gathering in the battleground state of Florida on Thursday that her father had asked for her prayers during the Jewish High Holidays this year.
Noting that the holidays feel "in the midst of, let's just say an important time in my life and my family's life," Trump — according to a recording obtained by The Algemeiner — told the crowd at The Shul, located between the Miami suburbs of Bal Harbour and Surfside, "My father didn't even give me a hard time about it once. You know what he would say right before Yom Tov — he would call and say, 'You better pray hard for me.' I'd say, 'Yes dad, we will pray hard.' Then he'd call Jared [Trump's husband Jared Kushner] and say, 'Jared, you gotta pray hard for me.' So he covered all of the bases."
Trump — whose five-year-old daughter recently started kindergarten at a Jewish school in New York City — also talked about the importance of Jewish education.
"It's such a blessing for me to have her come home every night and share with me the Hebrew that she's learned and sing songs for me around the holidays," Trump — who converted to Judaism in 2009 — said. "And it's really a learning opportunity for me once again through her eyes. It's really an amazing thing. It's just been such a great lesson."
While Trump said she did not plan to take on an official government role herself if her father was elected president on Nov. 8, she said she had strong opinions that she would not hesitate to share.
Trump vowed to be an advocate for women and Israel. Regarding her father's support for Israel, Trump said he would be "an unbelievable champion for Israel and for the Jewish people. You will not be disappointed."
Asked whether her father would move the US embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel, Trump answered unequivocally, "100%."
Referring to her conversion, which she called an "amazing and beautiful journey," Trump said her father supported her "from day one."
"There was no question, there was no argument," she said, adding that her father had "tremendous respect" for the Jewish religion.
Speaking at a gala dinner held by The Algemeiner in February 2015 where he received the Liberty Award for his contributions to US-Israel relations, Donald Trump said, "I have a Jewish daughter! This wasn't in the plan, but I'm very glad it happened."
In response to a question on Thursday about what she cherished most about Judaism, Ivanka Trump said, "Especially now being a parent, I deeply appreciate how it feels like everything about Judaism is architected to create connectivity and to create a grounding in what really matters."
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