Ivanka Trump talks skills training legislation with senators, CEOs

Ivanka Trump talks skills training legislation with senators, CEOs
© Greg Nash

White House senior adviser and first daughter Ivanka TrumpIvana (Ivanka) Marie TrumpUS should support Ngozi for WTO Director General   Trump administration awarding M in housing grants to human trafficking survivors Deutsche Bank launches investigation into longtime banker of Trump, Kushner MORE discussed legislation to boost skills training for tech careers with senators and corporate executives on Wednesday night, according to a source familiar with the event.

Trump specifically talked with lawmakers and business leaders about reauthorizing the Perkins Act, a bill aimed at bolstering workforce education training, during a dinner she and husband Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerFederal government pauses Kodak loan pending probes Beirut blast raises urgent questions about America's leadership in the world Lincoln Project ad dubs Jared Kushner the 'Secretary of Failure' MORE hosted at their home in northwest Washington, D.C.

The bill has been a priority for some major technology companies like IBM, whose CEO Ginni Rometty attended the dinner Wednesday night. The source noted though that the Perkins Act was a “priority topic” for Trump during the dinner.


The individual described the dinner as “a positive and productive discussion on overcoming a handful of obstacles and getting this bill onto the Senate floor.”

Other attendees included Sens. Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderSeveral GOP lawmakers express concern over Trump executive orders The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Negotiators 'far apart' as talks yield little ahead of deadline Trump-backed Hagerty wins Tennessee GOP Senate primary MORE (R-Tenn.), Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoAnalysis finds record high number of woman versus woman congressional races Former VA staffer charged with giving seven patients fatal insulin doses Senate GOP hedges on attending Trump's convention amid coronavirus uptick MORE (R-W.Va.), Mike EnziMichael (Mike) Bradley EnziChamber of Commerce endorses Ernst for reelection Republicans battle over COVID-19 package's big price tag Conservative group launches ad campaign for Rep. Roger Marshall in Kansas Senate race MORE (R-Wyo.), Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn Heitkamp70 former senators propose bipartisan caucus for incumbents Susan Collins set to play pivotal role in impeachment drama Pro-trade group launches media buy as Trump and Democrats near deal on new NAFTA MORE (D-N.D.) and Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharSenate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Senate Democrats push to include free phone calls for incarcerated people in next relief package Lobbying world MORE (D-Minn.), as well as Northrop Grumman CEO Wes Bush and Josh Bolton, the president of the Business Roundtable.

The Perkins Act was originally signed in 1984 and reauthorized in 1998, but proponents want changes that they say will make it more helpful to workers in a modern economy with a growing number of technical jobs.

An IBM spokesperson said the company believes an updated version of the act “can go a long way toward addressing America’s high-tech skills gap."

Some technology companies and researchers say action is needed to address a schism between available technical jobs and workers with the skills necessary to fill them.  

The bill has bipartisan support and passed in the House last year, but has yet to gain traction in this legislative session.