Kellyanne Conway suggests she'll turn down White House job because she's a mother

Kellyanne Conway talks motherhood and the West Wing
(Image credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

At a "Women Rule" forum in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, Kellyanne Conway said that she "will do whatever the president-elect and vice president-elect... believe is my best and highest use for them," but it probably won't involve a full-time job in the White House. She suggested she will play a "Kellyanne role" in Donald Trump's administration, but noted "my children are 12, 12, 8, and 7, which is bad idea, bad idea, bad idea, bad idea for mom going inside [the White House]." Her kids "have to come first, and those are very fraught ages," Conway said, but turning down a White House job "would be my personal choice and not a demand on me."

Conway was Trump's campaign manager for the last stretch of his campaign, and when discussing what role she could play after the election, senior campaign officials would begin the discussion, "I know you have four kids, but...." she told the audience. "I said there's nothing that comes after the 'but' that makes any sense to me, so don't even try. Like what is the 'but'?" she asked. "But they'll eat Cheerios for the rest of the day? Nobody will brush their teeth again until I get home?"

Conway said that when she helps interview potential Cabinet appointees, "I do politely mention to them the question isn't would you take the job, the male sitting across from me who's going to take a big job in the White House. The question is would you want your wife to?" she said. "Would you want the mother of children to? You really see their entire visage change. It's like, oh no, they wouldn't want their wife to take that job. But it's, it's all good."

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Trump, who once called pregnancy "an inconvenience" for employers, isn't trying to steer her out of the West Wing, Conway said. "Mothers and married women and unmarried women — they're all welcome in the Trump White House and he's made that very clear to me." Working mothers have opportunities in the U.S. capital, she added, but "we still have to make choices and there are limits."

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Peter Weber

Peter Weber is a senior editor at, and has handled the editorial night shift since the website launched in 2008. A graduate of Northwestern University, Peter has worked at Facts on File and The New York Times Magazine. He speaks Spanish and Italian and plays bass and rhythm cello in an Austin rock band. Follow him on Twitter.