Former Vice President Al Gore said he discussed climate change with Ivanka Trump Monday, in another sign that the first daughter will have an outsized role in President-elect Donald Trump’s administration.
“I had a lengthy and very productive session with the president-elect. It was a sincere search for areas of common ground,” the former vice president and climate activist told the press after his meeting with PEOTUS and his daughter at Trump Tower, in comments reported by NPR. “I had a meeting beforehand with Ivanka Trump. The bulk of the time was with the president-elect, Donald Trump. I found it an extremely interesting conversation, and to be continued, and I’m just going to leave it at that.”
Initially, Trump’s transition team said Gore would meet only with Ivanka Trump. The president-elect was a later addition, NPR reported.
The encounter with Gore might come as a surprise for those familiar with the president-elect’s prior statements about climate change, which he has called a “hoax” perpetrated by the Chinese in order to sap American competitiveness. During the campaign, Trump vowed to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, which commits the world’s countries to meeting certain targets in the reduction of greenhouse gases that fuel global warming. But since the election, Trump has sounded a more conciliatory tone on the issue, telling The New York Times in a sit-down that he would look at the issue anew.
Ivanka Trump has shown a keen interest in policy as the country prepares for the transition of power in January. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told the press that when she and the president-elect discussed his agenda on the phone, he handed the line over to his daughter when the issue of parental leave surfaced. That has been on Ivanka Trump’s radar since July, when she talked about the issue in her speech to the Republican National Committee. Reports earlier this week in the media also said that she intended to work on the issue of global warming, in counterpoint to many incoming White House personnel who dismiss the issue.
Daniel J. Solomon is the Assistant to the Editor/News Writer at the Forward. Originally from Queens, he attended Harvard as an undergraduate, where he wrote his senior thesis on French-Jewish intellectual history. He is excited to have returned to New York after his time in Massachusetts. Daniel’s passions include folk music, cycling, and pointed argument.