Donald Trump

Trump at Women's Empowerment Panel: ‘Have You Heard of Susan B. Anthony?'

The president was criticized on Twitter for his remarks

After helping the State Department recognize 13 women for demonstrating courage and leadership in the face of adversity on Wednesday, Melania Trump appeared at a White House panel discussion on women's empowerment.

She was introduced by her husband, President Donald Trump, as a "very highly accomplished woman."

He mentioned that her poll numbers are "through the roof," joking that she has to give him and Vice President Mike Pence the secret. In fact, only 37 percent approve of the president's job perfermance, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released on March 22, while 56 percent do not.

Trump bragged about his cabinet "full of incredible women leaders," referring to Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma.

Still, the four women hold only lower-ranking positions in Trump's administration. Trump's cabinet is more white and male than any first cabinet since Ronald Reagan's, according to the New York Times.

Trump continued his remarks Wednesday by asking the audience at the women's empowerment panel: "Have you heard of Susan B. Anthony? I'm shocked you've heard of her."

The remarks received backlash from many on the internet, including from former first daughter Chelsea Clinton.

The president ended his remarks with: "I want every young person in the audience, those cameras are all over, to know that the future truly belongs to you."

For Melania Trump, it was her first visit to a Cabinet department, the Associated Press reported. She helped the State Department recognize women from all over the world.

"These honorees, who have fought on the front lines against injustice, are true heroes," she said, adding that their bravery is a reminder that "there is always hope whenever the human spirit is brought to bear in the service of others."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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