Hours after news broke that President Trump's chief strategist Steve Bannon was leaving the White House, Ivanka Trump appeared to have other pressing matters on her mind. The president's daughter, often believed to be one of the few people who her father really listens to, tweeted Friday afternoon to remind Americans that the solar eclipse is coming on Monday.
There was a time when the First Daughter claimed that her influence within the White House was strong, that she could shape the White House agenda to fit her more socially-liberal, cosmopolitan views. She was supposedly the one in her father's administration who might push him to a more moderate position on climate change and ensure a defense of LGBT rights.
Of course, that didn't really seem to happen. The president pulled America out of the Paris Climate Accords, earning the U.S. widespread condemnation around the globe. And the president shocked even his own military advisors by tweeting out a surprise (yet to be enacted) ban on transgender troops fighting in the military, the most direct attack on the LGBT community from a president in more than a decade. Ivanka has since then reportedly been seeking to lower expectations for her role in policy, which is a big change from having taken her father's place at the G20 meeting of world leaders.
She has seemingly lowered her profile since then, not giving any notable interviews. And on Friday, in the midst of the chaos, she highlighted her diminished role, by choosing to, instead of commenting on the staffing changes or white nationalism controversy swirling around the Trump administration, remind us all that the moon is traveling around the earth.
I'm probably being too harsh here. I too am astoundingly excited for the solar eclipse, which, as the president's daughter so informatively reminded us, has not happened since 1979. Space is awesome, and as someone who sunburns from mere moments exposed to the sky, I welcome any chance to spend time outside without being vulnerable to skin cancer. I'm looking forward to seeing an event that tended to make our ancestors become convinced some demonic power had snatched away the sun. I am happy to see tweets from other parts of the U.S. government advertising this totally awesome occurrence soon occurring.
But there's nevertheless something quite weird about one of the few top Trump advisors who has survived all manners of staff shakeups and White House upheaval deciding she's above it all, hanging out above the clouds, where the moon passes by the sun. I guess that's the benefit of being the president's daughter. She's probably not getting fired.