Thursday, January 26, 2017
A very good interview with Kellyanne Conway
‘They never saw this coming’: A Q&A with Kellyanne Conway The Washington Post J
When Kellyanne Conway took over as Donald Trump’s presidential campaign manager in August — his third in under a year — there were few signs that Trump would emerge victorious on election night just three months later. He was trailing Hillary Clinton in some polls by 10 points nationally, and the gap was widening in battleground states. Twitter attacks by Trump on Khizr Khan, the father of an American Muslim Army captain killed in Iraq, and his metastasizing list of other Twitter and campaign rally barbs weren’t helping his favorability ratings, particularly among women.
Conway was known in political circles for her research firm, the Polling Company/WomanTrend, which she launched in 1995 in part to provide candidates and companies with studies and analysis of the concerns and aspirations of American women. Even though she had criticized Trump on numerous occasions earlier in the year, Conway was seen as someone who could bring discipline to the first-time candidate. And as a longtime Republican strategist and pollster with experience working for male candidates (Newt Gingrich, Ted Cruz, Mike Pence) who had trouble appealing to women voters, she was seen by politicos as well-suited to help Trump’s troubled bid. Conway, who turned 50 on Inauguration Day, now serves as counselor to the president in the White House, where she immediately made news defending what she called “alternative facts” related to inauguration attendance.
The only child of a single mother, Conway grew up in a working-class household in Atco, N.J. She has long-standing ties to Washington, having graduated from Trinity Washington University and George Washington University Law School. She and her husband, George, have four children. This interview took place at Trump Tower a week before the inauguration.