Two years ago no one outside a closed circle of New York elites had even heard of Jared Kushner. With the possible exception of N.J. Governor Chris Christie, who had prosecuted and jailed his father during Christie’s term as a U.S. Attorney. Kushner was born into wealth and married into even wealthier.
In fact, the chief accomplishment of his life was snagging Ivanka Trump, daughter of Donald Trump, as his wife. During the campaign, he was quietly the force behind the throne, the one person, besides his wife, whose advice Trump would seek AND follow. After the election, Kushner quickly began exerting his inside influence. His first step was engineering the ouster of Chris Christie as head of the Trump Transition Team.
It didn’t matter that Christie was the first of the Republican candidates to openly declare his support for Trump. Nor, did it seem to make any difference that Christie endured countless public humiliations by Trump on the campaign trail. Jared no doubt harbored a grudge against Christie, and that, folks, was that.
Early on Trump said he was going to put Kushner in charge of bringing peace to the Middle East. Jared had no diplomatic experience, no grounding in the history of the region. His one qualification for resolving an international crisis that existed since 1947 was that he was an Orthodox Jew. For a President who had no political experience, that no doubt made perfect sense.
In the meantime, Trump, who had seriously antagonized our neighbor to the south Mexico before completing one month in office, also decided that his son-in-law was the perfect person to clean up that little mess as well. Why use the diplomats of the State Department when Jared was available?
And while his father-in-law was ranting and raving about China throughout the campaign and after, Kushner was busy negotiating a tidy little $400 million real estate deal with that country. Even though the deal fell apart, Jared now has the savvy to sit in with dear old Dad when he meets with the leader of China later this week.
In fact, it has become apparent to most knowledgeable people, especially foreign governments, that the path to Donald Trump’s ear goes directly through his son-in-law, much to the consternation of White House insiders like Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus. If you want to deal with Trump, you first have to deal with Jared.
Much has been made of Ivanka’s influence with her father, and the fact that she will be occupying an office in the West Wing with an official title. But it becomes more and more apparent that the real power in that power couple lies with her husband.
In his copious spare time, when Kushner is not busy solving the problems of the world and negotiating new trade deals with China, he has also been given the task of completely renovating the U.S. government to make it run like an efficient business. If he were Catholic, instead of Jewish, he would already be put up for sainthood.
In the drip, drip, drip of revelations of possible collusion between the Team Trump and the Russians, the name of Jared Kushner is popping up more and more often. From reports of his sneaking Russian diplomats through the back door of Trump Tower to his links with state-controlled Russian banks, his fingerprints appear all over the place. In fact, the Senate Intelligence Committee last week announced its intention of questioning Kushner about these and other possible ties to Russia in testimony before them.
This week, at the apparent invitation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Kushner paid a visit to Iraq. This left many wondering – WHAT THE HELL FOR? Does his portfolio now extend to military operations?
As Trump becomes more and more isolated in his presidency, paranoid about leaks from within the White House, trusting only Fox News instead of his own intelligence officials, and seeing his approval ratings plummet to historic lows – Kushner’s influence will only increase.
Were America a monarchy instead of a republic, Kushner would be the equivalent of a crown prince. However, instead of a Prince of Wales, we get a Prince of Sales – one who combines nepotism with kleptocracy. A man with no experience or qualifications, who is getting on-the-job training at the expense of the taxpayers and the safety of our country.
And an entirely new meaning to the advertising slogan – He went to Jared.