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Donald Trump says only mothers deserve paid family leave

Trump outlined a policy that the Hillary Clinton's campaign said was out of the "'Mad Men' era" and "completely unserious."
Ivanka Trump, looks on as her father Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks at a campaign event in Aston, Pennsylvania, U.S., September 13, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar

Less than 60 days to go before election day, Donald Trump presented a far-reaching childcare policy, the centerpiece of which is a government-mandated six-week paid family leave for mothers but not fathers. Speaking Tuesday evening in the Philadelphia suburbs — a voting area vital to Trump's chances this November — alongside his daughter Ivanka, Trump outlined a policy that the Hillary Clinton's campaign said was out of the "'Mad Men' era" and "completely unserious."

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Clinton's senior advisor for policy Maya Harris said that not including paid leave for fathers was a demeaning throwback to an era "where only women are taking care of infants." Despite Trump's claim that Clinton did not have a child care policy of her own and "never will," the Democratic nominee released her plan over a year ago. If passed, it would federally mandate 12-week paid family leave for both mothers and fathers.

Responding to these critiques on "Good Morning America," Ivanka Trump, who helped craft the proposal, said that "Hillary Clinton has been around for decades and there's no policy benefitting either mothers or fathers in terms of paid leave."

Campaign bickering aside, Trump's proposal is actually closer to Clinton's than it is to most Republicans' in Congress. A call for mandated paid family leave failed to make it into the official GOP platform this summer and no other Republican presidential nominee in 2016 proposed anything as far reaching. Senator Marco Rubio's policy was the closest with only a tax incentive for businesses to provide 4 weeks of paid family leave. For his efforts, the Wall Street Journal editorial board criticized Rubio for embracing what they called "a paler shade of liberal government activism."

Trump embracing such a large government program so close to election day prompted many political observers to call it a naked pander to women voters. After all, Trump as recently as 2004 publicly called pregnancy an "inconvenience for a business." But as Clinton takes time off the campaign trail this week to recover from what her doctor says is pneumonia, Trump has the mic all to himself and is trying to get skeptical voters to give him a chance in the Oval Office.