Ivanka Trump makes her presence known in Cortland County

PREBLE, N.Y. — Ivanka Trump, the daughter of President Donald Trump and one of his top advisors, visited Cortland County Monday morning to discuss tax reform, deregulation, and the state of the economy with local business and community leaders.

Trump was invited to Suit-Kote Corporation, a road construction company based in Cortland, for a roundtable discussion. She arrived in her motorcade at around 9 a.m. Monday, where she was greeted by Republican Congresswoman Claudia Tenney, as well as Suit-Kote President Frank Suits and members of his family.

Suits took Trump on a tour of the facility, giving the president’s daughter a close look at some of the asphalt and paving equipment inside the massive facility that employs about 750 people in Cortland County, all while being accompanied by a swarm of U.S. Secret Service officers.

The roundtable discussion centered around the topic of tax reform and the current business climate in New York State. Trump praised her father’s tax reform bill, which she said has helped create a strong economy and boost jobs.

Members of the roundtable discussion included Frank Suits, President of Suit-Kote Corporation; Rep. Tenney; Bob Haight, Executive Director of the Cortland County Chamber of Commerce; Garry Van Gorder, President of the Cortland County Business Development Corporation; and members of the Suits family.

Trump took part in a roundtable discussion with local business owners and community leaders to discuss the current business climate in New York State.

“Six million Americans already directly benefited from wage increases or bonuses due to tax reform,” Trump said. “This is happening in real time. It’s just now kicking in. I think one of the great sleepers—and it feels very appropriate as we sit here surrounded by all this heavy machinery and equipment—is the 100 percent capital expense reform, which was also part of tax reform. It’s allowing businesses to invest in their own productivity.”

Trump’s visit also intended to serve as a boost to Congresswoman Tenney’s 2018 re-election campaign. Tenney, a Republican, represents the 22nd congressional district, which includes Cortland County. Tenney faces a challenge from Utica Democrat Anthony Brindisi in what is expected to be a battleground district in November.

While a civil discussion was happening inside the facility, dozens of protesters gathered outside the entrance to Suit-Kote to bring light to a number of controversial issues, including the separation and deportation of families at the U.S.-Mexican border, Trump’s tax plan, and the growing gap between rich and poor in the United States.

The rally was organized by Indivisible Cortland County.

“There’s way too much to put on one poster,” one protester said. “It’s hard to make a poster when there’s so much corruption and greed and mismanagement. This is not the United States of America we should be.”

Ivanka Trump is visiting the P-Tech school at the Institute of Technology in Syracuse this afternoon, where she will be joined by U.S. Rep. John Katko.