Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) on Tuesday struggled to list the qualifications of Ivanka Trump after he proclaimed that she would make a great U.S. senator.
During an interview on MSNBC, Zeldin asserted that newly-appointed White House Chief of State John Kelly would not diminish Ivanka Trump's role in the administration.
"I've had an opportunity to spend some quality time with Ivanka and a little bit of time with Jared [Kushner] as well," Zeldin explained. "I am super impressed with Ivanka Trump. She brings a tremendous amount of intellect and class. She cares about certain issues -- child care tax credits, paid family leave."
MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle interrupted: "Can I just say one thing? As much as I appreciate you talking about fine manners and class. As a professional woman and a mother, it's tough for me to stomach someone looking at me and talking about the great class, when you have the most senior woman in the White House saying nothing when her father says vicious things about a news anchor."
"That statement is just tough to swallow," Ruhle said.
"Well, yeah" Zeldin stuttered. "Ivanka obviously loves her father."
"I love mine too," Ruhle shot back.
"Ivanka Trump, she is super smart," Zeldin insisted. "She is highly capable in her own right. She could be a great United States senator."
"What are her credentials?" Ruhle wondered.
"She's got the full package," the congressman declared.
"What are her credentials to be a United States senator?" Ruhle repeated.
Zeldin pinned Ivanka Trump's Senate qualifications to the fact that she is a businesswoman who wants lower taxes.
"She makes all of her products overseas," Ruhle observed.
Co-host Ali Velshi agreed: "She does not make a single product in America. Does that not move you at all?"
Zeldin then argued that the interview was unfair.
"All of the sudden, it's one question after another, trying to get me to beat up on Ivanka Trump," he griped. "How is she qualified for United States senator? Making our tax code more competitive."
"As a businesswoman, she has a tremendous amount of experience. As a great mom, as a great wife," Zeldin continued. "She has a great education. She has great ideas on important issues that help families."