As America suffered four dark years under Donald Trump’s reign, we knew all too well how cruel, hypocritical, and inept his administration was. But we also knew that further revelations would inevitably surface after Trump left office that would paint an even more damning picture of a government supposedly run by “the best people.” One such revelation arrived yesterday afternoon, courtesy of the Government Accountability Office (GAO), and, like most things Trump, it’s both shocking and typical.
On the last day of Women’s History Month, the GAO published a report to Congress entitled, “Micro, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprise Development: USAID Needs to Develop a Targeting Process and Improve the Reliability of Its Monitoring.” While that title might seem bland, the report’s contents are nothing less than a scathing indictment of Ivanka Trump’s epic failure as a Senior Advisor to the President, a champion of women’s rights, and a competent moral leader.
In the same way that her father often tried to score cheap patriotic points by wrapping himself around the American flag, Ivanka embraced her leadership role in the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP) as purported proof of her commitment to women’s causes. Early last year, Ivanka received a standing ovation at a ceremony marking the W-GDP’s first anniversary. Ivanka also traveled around the world singing the W-GDP’s praises, proclaiming that it is “enabling us to rigorously track the execution and the efficacy of the money that we are spending.”
We now know that contrary to Ivanka’s boasts, the whole thing was just another Trumpian scam on the American taxpayer’s dime. The W-GDP, which was launched to realize the goals of the bipartisan Women’s Entrepreneurship and Economic Empowerment Act of 2018, was supposed to direct needed financing to women and very poor entrepreneurs interested in growing a business.
However, the GAO report revealed that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which handled $265 million a year for this purpose, was “unable to determine” whether the funding went to women and very poor recipients. Even more startling, the USAID had “not developed a process to support compliance with statutory requirements.”
In other words, Ivanka Trump’s initiative was a massive failure that never even bothered to develop blueprints on how to operate. This latest damning revelation about our former government is disturbing yet eerily familiar. It’s yet another reminder of the urgency to fight back against voter suppression and work hard to ensure that no one associated with Donald Trump’s kakistocracy gets near the White House again.