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In this video by The Young Turks, Cenk claims that Ivanka

That Ivanka does not make one product in America. Not one. She's never made a single product that she's sold in the United States of America.

Is this claim true?

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    Does the quote-unquote book she quote-unquote wrote count as a product? – HopelessN00b Jul 11 '18 at 5:45
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    I would also dispute their choice of language here. I sincerely doubt that Ivanka Trump personally makes any of the products she puts her name to. – AJFaraday Jul 11 '18 at 12:43
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    @AJFaraday would you accept a correction of, has Ivanka Trump ever paid wage slaves to produce products in America? – Evan Carroll Jul 11 '18 at 16:57
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    @AJFaraday It's common to conflate the owner/CEO of a company with the company itself, as in saying that Elon Musk makes electric cars and rockets. It's especially likely when the company is named after the owner. – Barmar Jul 11 '18 at 19:30
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    @HopelessN00b No. According to the quote we're only talking about products that have actually sold at least one unit. :) – aroth Jul 12 '18 at 3:45
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It is true that products from Ivanka Trump's (now former) fashion line are exclusively made overseas. This is confirmed through U.S. Customs records, interviews with people who have written articles about it, and confirmed by both former Trump Press Secretary Sean Spicer and the President of the Ivanka Trump brand, Abigail Klem.


Matea Gold of the Washington Post was interviewed by John Yang of PBS Newshour back in July 2017 regarding, among other things, the manufacture of merchandise for Ivanka Trump’s fashion line.

The relevant except is provided here.

MATEA GOLD:

The Ivanka Trump brand, which the first daughter still owns, but doesn’t control on a day-to-day management, makes clothes, handbags, shoes in an array of overseas factories, we found, exclusively in foreign factories.

We traced her current line of products to five specific countries, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam. There’s also customs records that show that, back in 2013, some of her shoes were made in Ethiopia.

And the brand told us that, while they would like to bring manufacturing back to the United States, they don’t feel like it’s really possible to do in a large-scale fashion.

Ms. Gold was interviewed after she wrote a story for the Washington Post detailing Ms. Trump's overseas manufacturing.


Former Trump Press Secretary Sean Spicer was asked about this story shortly after the original Washington Post article was posted. Some of the questions were included in a CNN article titled White House defends Ivanka Trump brand during 'Made in America' Week.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that while President Donald Trump is looking to create an environment to make more products domestically through tax and regulatory reform, he conceded that "Made in America" may not be achievable for all industries.

"There are certain things we may not have the capacity to do here in terms of having a plant or a factory that can do it. The beautiful thing about a capitalistic society is if there's enough of a demand for it, it will happen," Spicer told reporters during a press briefing.

"But some lines, some industries, some products may not have the scalability or the demand here in this country, but like so many other things, if there's enough of a demand then hopefully somebody builds a factory and does it," he added.


This information is further backed up by a quote from Abigail Klem, President of the Ivanka Trump Brand. From the PBS transcript, above:

JOHN YANG:

And what did the Trump people say to you? Today, Sean Spicer was asked today about some of this in the White House briefing, and said it would be inappropriate for him to talk about a private business at the White House podium. What did they tell you in response to these things?

MATEA GOLD:

Well, the president of the Ivanka Trump brand, Abigail Klem, told us that one of the reasons they had not taken these other measures that other companies have is because they’re a newer and smaller brand and that they’re looking now to really try to live their mission of women who work, which is the motto Ivanka Trump developed at her company throughout their whole supply chain.

And that is something that they said is evolving and they’re going to continue to strive to do. But Klem also told us that the goal of bringing manufacturing back to the United States for their company was just unrealistic, that there aren’t trained workers that work in the apparel industry here anymore, and, in many cases, the machinery doesn’t even exist to do this kind of production.


Note that while it is easy to cry hypocrisy regarding the policy positions of the Trump administration and the manufacturing process of Ivanka Trump's brand, the requirement to purchase overseas is not entirely Ms. Trump's fault.

JOHN YANG:

And how does this compare? We should also note that the Trump brand, the Trump Organization brand products made in about 12 different countries, including Bangladesh and China. How does this compare with the rest of the industry?

MATEA GOLD:

Well, the reality is that the American apparel industry is very firmly grounded in globalization and overseas production.

About 97 percent of the clothes and shoes sold here in the United States are made abroad. And industry experts say that it is going to be incredibly difficult to reverse that trend.

So, the focus in the industry right now is not on bringing manufacturing back in a large-scale fashion, but rather trying to give consumers a sense of confidence that their goods are not being made by workers overseas who are being exploited for their labor.


Edit: as of 24 July 2018, Ivanka Trump has decided to shut down her fashion company.

Trump's clothing and accessory business has been operating with limitations to reduce potential violations of ethics laws and the perceptions she's profiteering off her White House role. Given those restrictions, Ivanka, who serves as a senior adviser to President Donald Trump, decided it didn't make sense to keep the company running if she's not returning after her father's presidency, two people with knowledge of her decision-making process told CNN.

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    so easy to scream that things aren't made in America (or Europe) and then go out and buy cheap Chinese stuff because the alternatives made in America or Europe are 50-100% more expensive due to higher wages and taxes (which is the reality). – jwenting Jul 12 '18 at 6:42
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    Agreed, @jwenting - but at the same time it's easy (and wrong) to blame China for the trade deficit. It's - as you rightly said - our own fault if we buy 'made in China'. Not China's fault. – Aganju Jul 12 '18 at 17:46
  • It's more opinion than anything else, but, despite the easy hypocrisy claims you can make about this, it's not 100% her fault because the US just doesn't make clothing anymore. It was all outsourced to China a long time ago. – DenisS Jul 12 '18 at 18:58
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    @DenisS - Actually, if you Google it, there are dozens if not hundreds of clothing brands made in the US. – Daniel R Hicks Jul 14 '18 at 12:38
  • @jwenting Only 100% more expensive? Probably closer to 500% more expensive. – gerrit Jul 15 '18 at 13:45

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