Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager during the last stretch of his campaign, is lauded as the first woman to run a winning U.S. presidential campaign. She is seen as one of the GOP’s primary experts on female voters, and is known for helping mitigate a sea of scandals plaguing Trump late into the election.
But who exactly is Kellyanne Conway? How did she land a job with the winning Presidential campaign? Read on to find out!
1. Conway has plenty of experience with Republican political campaigns.
The 49-year old has spent nearly three decades telling Republican candidates how to appeal to female voters. In 1995, Conway started her own polling firm, The Polling Company. Since then, she’s worked with many high-profile Republicans, including then Indiana Governor Mike Pence, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, and Newt Gingrich, candidate for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination.
During the early years of her career in the 90s, Conway (then known by her maiden name, Fitzpatrick) was regularly seen attacking the Clintons on T.V.
2. Conway is no stranger to campaign controversies.
In 2012, Conway’s client Todd Akin, who was then running to be a Missouri Congressman, was criticized for saying, “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
Conway’s advice to Republican candidates after the scandal was clear and no less controversial: Stop talking about rape.
3. She’s known Trump for years before the election.
Conway met Trump a decade ago, while living in one of his properties and serving on the condo board of Manhattan’s Trump Tower. She was asked to be on Trump’s campaign from the beginning, but chose to first campaign for Ted Cruz during the primaries.
4. Her husband, George T. Conway III, worked on Paula Jones’ lawsuit against Bill Clinton.
Paula Jones’ sexual harassment lawsuit against President Bill Clinton led to the uncovering of the Monica Lewinsky scandal and Clinton’s impeachment trial.
5. Conway wrote a bipartisan book called What Women Really Want
Conway wrote the book with Democratic political strategist Celinda Lake. The full title of the book, which talks about how women are breaking traditional norms and powerfully shaping America’s future, is What Women Really Want: How American Women are Quietly Erasing Political, Racial, Class, and Religious Lines to Change the Way We Live.
6. Conway was pivotal to Trump’s astounding success.
She is a huge reason Trump maintained support among female Republican voters in a sea of sexual assault scandals late into the election.
When Conway became Trump’s third campaign manager in August 2016, the campaign was in shambles. This was mainly because of Trump’s insulting remarks to the parents of Humayun Khan, a Muslim American soldier killed in Iraq.
Then, Conway surprised everyone by massively increasing Trump’s support by the first Presidential debate in September 2016. During the debates, Trump had moments of sounding like a conventional politician, especially when promoting his promise to “break up the special interest monopoly.” She’s credited with (at least temporarily) curbing Trump’s Twitter outbursts.
Conway also maintained that despite Trump’s misogynist language and the Billy Bush tape scandal, Republican women would be attracted to Trump’s economic message – and, in the end, she was right.
What do you think of Kellyanne Conway’s work as Trump’s campaign manager? Let me know in the comments below!