President Trump’s senior adviser Kellyanne Conway has once again sparked controversy after being photographed kneeling on a couch in the Oval Office, whilst her boss met with leaders of historically black colleges. When the photographs emerged online, Conway’s relaxed position raised a few eyebrows, with many arguing the casualness of her posture was disrespectful.
According to the Telegraph, the picture was taken during a visit to the White House by leaders of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). However, in the far left of the frame, President Trump’s senior adviser Kellyanne Conway can be seen sat on a couch in the Oval Office, with her feet curled up and using her phone. Conway’s behavior during such a significant moment has been branded as lacking in taste and disrespectful to the visitors whose presence she was in.
Criticism of Conway’s behavior came on Twitter, with one user saying “What are you doing on that couch, Kellyanne Conway? Does not look respectful in the Oval Office.”
“To be fair we shouldn’t expect people born in [a] barn to know any better. No respect for the highest office,” another added.
According to BuzzFeed, whilst some observers made jest of Conway’s posture on the Oval Office couch, sparking a range of new Kellyanne themed memes, others looked to the photo as symbolic of larger issues, with one user saying, “In this photo exists every comment on race and on respectability to be had on earth.” The meeting was, of course, scheduled as an opportunity for President Trump to strengthen relations with leaders of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), however, the actions of his senior adviser Kellyanne Conway appear to have distracted from the initial purpose of the meeting.
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Others were quick to jump to Conway’s defense, however, recalling an infamous photograph taken in 2013 showing Donald Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, with his feet on the Oval Office desk. According to the Daily Mail, President Obama sparked criticism in 2013 when he was photographed with his feet up on the Resolute desk, given to President Rutherford B. Hayes by Queen Victoria in 1880. The move was branded as disrespectful by many Republicans, symbolic of the laid back style President Obama brought to the White House during his tenure between 2009 and 2017.
I'll take shoes on a couch over this any day. pic.twitter.com/JLE16uQFsF— Amy Lutz (@amylutz4) February 28, 2017
Kellyanne Conway has been the source of a good deal of controversy for the Trump administration in recent weeks. During a recent TV interview, Conway referred to a fake “Bowling Green Massacre” in order to justify the recently enacted travel ban by President Trump. As a result, a number of prominent news channel hosts came out to say that they would no longer invite Conway on their programs, and the White House has reportedly banned Trump’s former campaign manager from making any further television appearances, casting doubt over her future within the Trump administration.
Conway also received criticism for promoting Ivanka Trump’s perfume brand, after urging the president’s supporters to go out and buy the line of products. The encouragement appeared to pay off, with two of Ivanka Trump’s fragrances becoming top sellers on Amazon. However, the White House is said to have “counseled” Conway over the comments.
As the person responsible for Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton last November, it’s unlikely that the president would be keen to remove Conway as one of his senior advisers in a hurry, especially with speculation that she’ll run his re-election bid in 2020. However, several gaffes, including the most recent involving the Oval Office couch, are making Kellyanne Conway something of a liability for the Trump administration.
[Featured Image by Aude Guerrucci-Pool/Getty Images]