Chelsea gives birth to (Jewish?) girl
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Chelsea gives birth to (Jewish?) girl

Former first daughter tweets that she is ‘full of love, awe and gratitude’ at birth of daughter Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky

Chelsea Clinton during the Clinton Global Initiative's 10th Annual Meeting in New York City on September 23, 2014 (photo credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images/AFP)
Chelsea Clinton during the Clinton Global Initiative's 10th Annual Meeting in New York City on September 23, 2014 (photo credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images/AFP)

Chelsea Clinton has given birth to a daughter named Charlotte, the first grandchild of former president Bill Clinton and former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Clinton and Jewish husband Marc Mezvinsky announced the birth of their first child on Saturday morning. The baby’s name is Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky.

Chelsea Clinton announced the baby’s birth on Twitter, saying she and her husband were “full of love, awe and gratitude as we celebrate the birth of our daughter, Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky.”

Her announcement in April that she and Mezvinsky were expecting their first child set off a fairly predictable wave of reactions Jewish-wise, not unlike the interest their 2010 wedding generated.

Marc and I are full of love, awe and gratitude as we celebrate the birth of our daughter, Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky.
— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) September 27, 2014

Interfaithfamily.com quickly seized the pregnancy as an “opportunity to share with ALL expecting parents” its various resources for new interfaith parents.

Meanwhile, at the other end of the spectrum, The Jewish Press chose this headline: “Chelsea Clinton Pregnant with Non-Jewish Child.” Calling the former first daughter “America’s poster child for intermarriage,” the Brooklyn-based Orthodox newspaper noted that in marrying four years ago the pair was “effectively pruning away that 3,300 year old Jewish branch of the (Mezvinsky) family.”

Under the traditional policy of matrilineal descent, adhered to by Orthodox and Conservative Jews, the child will not be Jewish unless s/he undergoes a conversion, but Reform and Reconstructionist Jews will recognize the baby as a Jew if he or she has a Jewish upbringing.

Back in April, Chelsea told a group of young female students that she felt “all the better whether it’s a girl or a boy that she or he will grow up in a world with so many strong female leaders.

“I just hope I will be as good a mom to my child and, hopefully, children as my mom was to me,” she said.

Hillary Clinton, the former first lady, secretary of state and New York senator, who is considering another presidential campaign in 2016, said at the time she was “really excited” about becoming a grandmother.

“It makes this work even more important because we’ve made a lot of progress,” Clinton said. “I want to see us keep moving and certainly for future generations as well so that maybe our grandchild will not have to be worried about some of the things that young women and young men are worried about today.”

After growing up in the public eye as a teenager in the White House, Chelsea Clinton graduated from Stanford University and Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and worked in New York for a hedge fund and a management consulting firm.

She and Marc Mezvinsky, the son of two former members of Congress, were married in Rhinebeck, New York, in July 2010, and the former first daughter has balanced work and other interests, pursuing a doctorate from Oxford University, where her father was a Rhodes Scholar, while taking a leading role in her family’s foundation.

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