Ivanka Trump appearance at tech show sparks backlash
White House adviser Ivanka Trump on Tuesday was met with a friendly reception from the crowd while delivering a keynote address at the CES tech gathering in Las Vegas, the nation’s biggest consumer electronics trade show.
But her appearance ignited intense backlash from women and other tech workers who argued that her background did not align with what the annual tech conference is meant to represent.
Hundreds of Twitter users tweeted the hashtag #BoycottCES to voice frustration with President Trump’s daughter’s appearance.
Brianna Wu, a video game developer who is running for Congress in Massachusetts, tweeted before the event that Ivanka Trump “is not a woman in tech” and that her invitation to CES was a “lazy attempt to emulate diversity.”
“This is an insult to women in technology, we did hard times in University, engineering, math, and applied sciences,” technology investor Elisabeth Fullerton wrote on Facebook. “This is what extreme privilege and entitlement get you. It’s not what you know it’s who you know I guess.”
Trump spoke with CTA President Gary Shapiro for about 40 minutes during a discussion on the “path to the future of work.”
Among other things, she touted the administration’s efforts to work with tech companies to train Americans to learn new skills and develop apprenticeships. The conversation touched on areas that Trump, the president’s eldest daughter, has focused on in her role in the White House.
“We appreciate Ivanka Trump coming to CES 2020 and speaking before a full-capacity audience on the critical issue of the future of jobs because of advancements in technology,” Shapiro said in a statement to The Hill. “Developing our future workforce has bipartisan support, and the discussion reflected the importance of and need for a strategic government-industry approach on the future American workforce.”