How Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump's Friendship Has Remained Strong Through the Years
They came of age in the limelight, married around the same time, became mothers and campaigned for their parents.
Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump have established themselves as powerful women in the footsteps of their famous parents. Looking back on their lives, it is no surprise they turned out the way they did — successful, strong and eloquent.
The two women have become friends over the years and 2016 saw both of them entering the political fray as each campaigned for their parents in a heated presidential campaign.
Growing Up in the Public Eye
Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump have spent their lives in the public eye, growing up in the shadow of their prominent parents.
Chelsea, born in Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1980, is Bill and Hillary Clinton's only child. In 1992, at 12, she was thrust into the national spotlight as her father ran for president, eventually taking office in January 1993.
Chelsea, who endured her awkward teen years inside the White House, shied away from the public eye and immersed herself in schoolwork, after-school clubs and other extracurricular activities like ballet.
In 1997, she attended Stanford University to study pre-med. She would eventually change her major to history as her father’s scandal with Monica Lewinsky began to make national headlines.
In Hillary Clinton’s autobiography, Living History, her mother credited her only child her keeping her parents together during one of the darkest periods of their marriage.
From the moment Ivanka Trump was born in 1981, she was the apple of her wealthy father’s eye. Trump’s first daughter with then-wife Ivana grew up in the limelight, thanks to her famous dad’s massive personality as he became increasingly popular in the 1980s.
By the time Ivanka was 10, her parents divorced and she attended boarding school in Connecticut. When she was 14, she started making a name for herself outside the Trump household by becoming one of the most in-demand models of the fashion industry.
In 1997, she graced the cover of Seventeen magazine and co-hosted the Miss Teen USA pageant, which her father had bought the year before.
She told Inside Edition in 1997: “I have been wanting to do this since I was 4. I love to model, it is something I enjoy doing.”
As she grew older, she became disenchanted with modeling and wanted to become a businesswoman. She went to her father’s alma matter at the University of Pennsylvania and eventually learned the ropes of the family business.
The New York Lives of Chelsea and Ivanka
Since Ivanka Trump was an infant, she knew what life in New York City was like. She was a staple in the socialite community and was found at many of the city’s hot spots for dining, shopping and nightlife.
Ivanka would go on to help run her father’s company, the Trump Organization, and also started a successful clothing line. By the time she was in her mid-20s, she was starring with her father and brothers — Donald, Jr. and Eric — on The Apprentice. She also wrote the best seller, The Trump Card: Playing to Win in Work and Life, in 2009.
For Chelsea Clinton, New York City was a new animal for her when she moved there in 2003. At the time, her mother was a New York State Senator and she was working for consulting firm McKinsey and Company.
It was during this time in the city where the two young professionals crossed paths, becoming close friends and often meeting up at charity events and social gatherings.
Chelsea actually got her first taste of politics without her parents, when she campaigned for John Kerry and John Edwards in their 2004 presidential campaign while continuing to work in the city.
By the time her mother decided to run for president in 2008, she spent a year campaigning for her mother, who eventually lost the Democratic nomination to Barack Obama.
While in New York City, both women found love and married within a year of each other. Both Ivanka and Chelsea married and began starting their own families.
Their Special Friendship
If anyone follows the duo on social media, it is obvious they are close friends and constantly support one another in their life endeavors.
Their bond also blossomed due to their parents at one point being friends. Donald Trump invited the Clinton’s to his 2005 wedding to third wife, Melania.
While the relationship between the Clinton and Trump parents has become icy in the current presidential campaign and political climate, Chelsea and Ivanka remain close.
Earlier in the year, Politico revealed that the two had agreed not to be photographed together at events to avoid awkward moments from the press.
As they've gotten older, the lives of Chelsea and Ivanka have gone parallel.
Since both women are close in age and married around the same time, they also have children who are close in age as well. Earlier this year, both women gave birth to children while campaigning for their respective parents.
Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have three children together. In 2011, she gave birth to their first child, Arabella Rose, followed by Joseph Frederick in 2013. Theodore James was born in March while she was campaigning for her father.
Ivanka took to Twitter to announce the news of Theodore’s birth.
Jared and I feel incredibly blessed to announce the arrival of Theodore James Kushner. Xx Ivanka pic.twitter.com/yBmf7muy8ZMarch 27, 2016
In September 2014, Chelsea became a mother for the first time giving birth to Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky. In June 2016, she gave birth to her second child, Aiden.
“Marc and I are overwhelmed with gratitude and love as we celebrate the birth of our son, Aidan Clinton Mezvinsky," Chelsea wrote on Twitter following the birth.
During her speech at the DNC in July, she praised her mother saying: “I hope that one day my children will be as proud of me as I am of my mother. I'm so grateful to be her daughter. I'm so grateful that she's Charlotte and Aidan's grandmother.”
How the Campaign Didn’t Change Their Friendship
Chelsea and Ivanka’s parents went head-to-head in 2016 in the battle to win the White House, as politics can divide a family or any friendship, these two women made the decision to not let anything alter their bond.
In August, Ivanka told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren that their friendship is still very good.
“She's a great girl and she's a great friend to me. And obviously the intensity and scrutiny at this moment in our lives is pretty extreme,” Trump’s eldest daughter said. “We're not the candidates. We're the children of the candidates. We've stayed close to one another, maybe a little less publicly so, but she's a good friend. We support each other."
She added: “We never talked about politics before this campaign and it's probably a good topic to avoid talking about now.”
Both proud daughters campaigned for their parents since they both announced they were running for office. They also both introduced their parents at their respective political conventions in July when each accepted their party’s nominee for president.
Chelsea once said Ivanka’s disposition reminded her of her father, telling Vogue magazine: “It's an awareness that in some ways reminds me of my dad, and his ability to increase the joy of the room.”
In September, Chelsea told The View that she and Ivanka: “were friends long before this election. We will be friends long after this election. Our friendship didn't start in politics; it certainly is not going to end because of politics. I have tremendous respect for Ivanka.”
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