House Oversight Committee Chair Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) said Wednesday that he doesn’t think President Donald Trump’s tweet attacking department store Nordstrom for dropping his daughter Ivanka Trump’s clothing and accessories line is “a big deal.”
“Is it appropriate, do you believe, is it ethical—and you oversee the executive branch of the government—for the President to be commenting about his daughter’s business like this?” CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Chaffetz.
“I think most people can relate to the fact that a father, a doting father with very successful children is going to look after those children and, you know, if he sees something going wrong, he’s going to call it out,” Chaffetz said.
He said that he doesn’t “pay much attention to it.”
“I don’t think it raises to the standard that Congress or CNN or somebody thinks that this is a big deal,” Chaffetz said. “But that’s my opinion.”
“He’s not just the father. He’s also the President of the United States,” Blitzer pressed. “Is that appropriate really for a president to be doing that?”
“I think the President has the right to weigh in on his opinion on things, and especially as it relates to his children,” Chaffetz said.
He said that other elected officials use social media to “weigh in on their opinion about the Super Bowl and which teams they support, which stores they like, which hamburgers they like.”
“I tweet a lot about cheeseburgers,” Chaffetz said. “I’ve never had people complain about that.”
Nordstrom announced it was dropping Ivanka Trump’s line last week citing poor sales and insisting that the move was not political, which a spokesperson reiterated to TPM.
“We made this decision based on performance,” a Nordstrom spokesperson said. “Over the past year, and particularly in the last half of 2016, sales of the brand have steadily declined to the point where it didn’t make good business sense for us to continue with the line for now.”
White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Wednesday that Nordstrom’s decision is an attack on Trump’s policies and his daughter.
“There’s a targeting of her brand and it’s her name,” he said. “She’s not directly running the company. It’s still her name on it. There are clearly efforts to undermine that name based on her father’s positions on particular policies that he’s taken. This is a direct attack on his policies and her name.”