Donald Trump just hired his son-in-law as a senior advisor, and now they stand to make hundreds of millions from corrupt deals. Trump’s transition team announced on Monday that the president-elect intends to appoint Jared Kushner, who is married to his daughter Ivanka, as an advisor.
Jared has been a tremendous asset and trusted advisor throughout the campaign and transition and I am proud to have him in a key leadership role in my administration,” Trump said in a statement on Monday.
“He has been incredibly successful, in both business and now politics. He will be an invaluable member of my team as I set and execute an ambitious agenda, putting the American people first,” Trump continued, without ever bothering to mention that Kushner just happens to be his son-in-law.
The statement also said that Kushner would be unpaid, which means he doesn’t have to submit financial disclosure documents to be confirmed. This means all his business ties and financial dealings will remain secret, so he and Trump can profit from all the shady deals they want. Not that he would even turn over his financials anyway. After all, lots of Trump’s nominees that do have to submit this information haven’t bothered to do so.
But wait, you say. Aren’t there laws against this kind of thing? Well, yes. But the White House is one of the few places the nepotism law doesn’t apply. When then-President Bill Clinton appointed his wife, Hillary Clinton, to serve as the head of his White House health care task force in 1993, conservatives tried to invoke the anti-nepotism rule. A federal appeals court ruled that the nepotism ban did not apply to the White House, especially if the position was unpaid.
Trump’s team announced Kushner “has chosen to [forgo] his salary while serving in the administration.” Although they would surely like you to believe he has benevolent motivations for saying to hell with getting paid, once again it’s all just smoke and mirrors. Not being paid allows him to avoid having his financial ties and business holdings examined in an ethics review and also helps exempt him from nepotism laws.
With Trump and his family, it’s always about the money. If Kushner is saying he is willing to “forgo his salary,” you can bet your ass he knows that he’s going to be pulling in the money from somewhere else.
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