Barron Trump Could Be The Debate's Youngest Guest

by Lani Seelinger

Donald Trump’s older children from his first marriage with Ivana Trump have proven themselves to be ubiquitous on the campaign trail. They’re policy advisors, social media advocates, and millennial spokespeople. But what about Trump’s youngest son, his only child with Melania Trump? So far, the Trump campaign has given no indication of whether 10-year-old Barron Trump will be at the presidential debates.

Melania and Donald have been keeping their youngest son out of the sometimes-cruel spotlight that a presidential campaign can cast on the candidates’ families. On the one hand, this makes perfect sense. He’s an elementary school kid, and despite certain freedoms he has which come with being Donald's youngest son, his mother seems to be totally devoted to giving him the most idyllic childhood imaginable. Say what you will about his father, but Barron deserves to enter the world with a clean slate.

On the other hand, however, it’s somewhat surprising that Trump hasn’t cast his youngest son to play a role that only he could: the humanizer. Trump’s three oldest children, Ivanka, Donald Jr., and Eric, have appeared at every turn in their different roles. Ivanka acts as an important advisor and as Trump’s main way of addressing female voters. Donald Jr. has gotten the campaign into hot water with his now-infamous Skittles tweet, which came after a number of other troubling connections he made to, among others, white supremacists. Eric hasn’t really done much of his own accord, but he is always, well, there. Tiffany Trump, a recent graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, stays mostly out of the spotlight.

Barron, on the other hand, has rarely even made appearances on the campaign trail. His appearance at the RNC, in fact, was characterized primarily by his yawning and seeming disinterest. The debates are much less of a spectacle than the conventions, and the 10-year-olds who want to listen to policy discussions are few and far between. Which is totally fair enough. After all, how much public speaking did you do as a 10-year-old?

Trump has made it a major goal to paint himself as a man of the people, despite the obvious particularities of his life. Much of the voting public can empathize with the experience of being a parent, and parents of young children, many of them millennials, are naturally an important voting bloc. And yet Trump has left Barron almost entirely out of the process. The easiest explanation for Barron’s absence is probably his young age.

Candidates’ families often flood the stages at the end of the debates, so there's a possibility you'll get a full Trump family photo shoot at the end of the debate. Will Barron Trump actually have to sit through the debate in order to show up there, though? That remains to be seen.