US President Donald Trump has said his administration will work to ensure America becomes a place where women can thrive “like never before”, as he praised his women colleagues, including Indian-Americans Nikki Haley and Seema Verma.
Speaking at a White House panel discussion on women empowerment, Trump said, “My Cabinet is full of really incredible women leaders. Administrator Linda McMahon, who has been a friend of mine for a long time, long time. She’s done an incredible job in business, by the way. Administrator Seema Verma, Secretary Betsy DeVos, and, of course, my good friend from South Carolina who is a very tough competitor, I want to tell you - Nikki Haley, Ambassador. She is doing fantastically well. (Applause.) And we’re also joined, of course, by Florida Attorney General, highly respected, Pam Bondi.”
The discussion was joined by Indian-American Seema Verma, who holds a key healthcare position in the administration, and First Lady Melania Trump made a rare appearance at the event.
“My administration will work every day to ensure that our economy is a place where women can work, succeed, and thrive like never before. That includes fighting to make sure that all mothers and all families have access to affordable childcare,” he said, adding “We want every daughter in America to grow up in a country where she can believe in herself, believe in her future, and follow her heart and realise her dreams.”
US Vice President Mike Pence described Haley as “cool” and said she is a favourite of one of his two daughters. “We are so honoured to have you in this administration,” Pence said.
He also praised Verma - the new administrator for the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services. “The truth is, American women are making a difference in our administration, in our economy, and in our communities every single day.” White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that the Trump administration is “committed to empowering women in the workplace.”
First Lady Melania Trump made the case for women's empowerment at a ceremony on Wednesday honouring a dozen women activists who overcame great odds to advance human rights around the world.
She appeared as a special guest at the International Women of Courage event at the US State Department.
“It will be my great honour to share a stage with these amazing women. Each of the award recipients has overcome incredible odds in her pursuit to change the world and make it better,” said First Lady Melania Trump. “As women, we must continue to stand together with the steadfast goal of making our world safer through acts of collaborative and individual bravery. As we all know, wherever women are diminished, the entire world is diminished with them.”