Trump makes fun of Kushner’s family during meetings
Odds are you’re having a better Memorial Day weekend than President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner. The golden boy returned from the administration’s piss-off-Europe tour embroiled in controversy after the bombshell reports that Kushner 1) held undisclosed meetings during the campaign with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak and 2) attempted to establish a secret communications channel with Russia during the transition. Then on Sunday night, Kushner’s hometown paper of record tore him a new asshole with a deeply sourced account of his fall from the president’s good graces.
Or as The New York Times so elegantly put it, the real estate heir is at risk of being evicted from his most valuable property:
The most successful deal of Jared Kushner’s short and consequential career in real estate and politics involves one highly leveraged acquisition: a pair of adjoining offices a few penny-loafer paces from his father-in-law’s desk in the White House.
Over the past week, Mr. Kushner, who at age 36 occupies an ill-defined role somewhere between princeling and President Trump’s shadow chief of staff, has seen his foothold on that invaluable real estate shrink amid revelations he is under scrutiny in a federal investigation into whether there was collusion with Russian officials during the presidential campaign.
The story, a three-byline banger, details how Kushner cozied up to Trump, securing his father-in-law’s trust by leading the campaign’s digital operation and pretending not to have “any vested interests,” casting himself as an antidote to the rest of the administration’s opportunism. But unfortunately for JKush, recent missteps are deteriorating that trust.
For one, the NYT re-confirmed that Kushner is to blame for the Comey fiasco:
Other times, [Kushner] serves as a goad, as he did in urging Mr. Comey’s ouster and assuring Mr. Trump that it would be a political “win” that would neutralize protesting Democrats because they had called for Mr. Comey’s ouster over his handling of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, according to six West Wing aides.
POTUS is also pissed about Kushner’s sister Nicole Meyer touting her Trump connection to Chinese investors. He’s even started shitting on Jared about it during meetings.
From the NYT:
The most serious point of contention between the president and his son-in-law, two people familiar with the interactions said, was a video clip this month of Mr. Kushner’s sister Nicole Meyer pitching potential investors in Beijing on a Kushner Companies condominium project in Jersey City. At one point, Ms. Meyer — who remains close to Mr. Kushner — dangled the availability of EB-5 visas to the United States as an enticement for Chinese financiers willing to spend $500,000 or more.
… In the following days during routine West Wing meetings, the president made several snarky, disparaging comments about Mr. Kushner’s family and the visas that were clearly intended to express his annoyance, two aides said. Mr. Kushner did not respond, at least not in earshot.
It doesn’t help that the rest of the administration seems to hate Kushner’s guts. It’s not just leper Nazi Steve Bannon. White House staff describe Jared as an unqualified and arrogant free-wheeler who ducks accountability. Sounds about right!
That unfailing self-regard has not endeared him to the rest of the staff. Resentful Trump staff members have long talked about “Jared Island” to describe the special status occupied by Mr. Kushner, who, in their view, is given license to exercise power and take on a vague portfolio — “Middle East peace” and “innovation” are its central components — without suffering the consequences of failure visited by the president on mere hirelings.
Adding to the animus is Mr. Kushner’s aloof demeanor and his propensity for avoiding messy aspects of his job that he would simply rather not do — he has told associates he wants nothing to do with the legislative process, for instance. He also has a habit, they say, of disappearing during crises, such as his absence on a family ski trip when Mr. Trump’s first health care bill was crashing in March.
Amid the ruckus, Kushner has volunteered to testify before congressional committees investigating the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. Ever a hedging weasel, he also claims to be considering a return to private life. For now though, the NYT says Jared is “willing to stay and fight.”