Jared Kushner's Life Could Become 'Study in Misery'
As 'New York Times' reports things are fraying between Trump and his son-in-law
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2017 11:46 AM CDT
US President Donald Trump's assistant and daughter Ivanka Trump holds hands with her husband White House senior adviser Jared Kushner as they enter the Pantheon for a private visit, in Rome, Wednesday,...   (Massimo Percossi/ANSA via AP)

(Newser) – President Trump had only kind words for Jared Kushner in a statement issued Sunday night: "Jared is doing a great job for the country. I have total confidence in him. He is respected by virtually everyone and is working on programs that will save our country billions of dollars. In addition to that, and perhaps more importantly, he is a very good person." The New York Times paints a far less rosy picture of Kushner's position in the White House in the wake of the news that Kushner allegedly tried to set up a secret communications line between the Kremlin and the Trump transition team. The latest:

  • Among the Times' more damning lines: "In recent weeks, the Trump-Kushner relationship, the most stable partnership in an often unstable West Wing, is showing unmistakable signs of strain. ... It has been duly noted in the White House that Mr. Trump ... has increasingly included Mr. Kushner when he dresses down aides and officials, a rarity earlier in his administration."

  • At the root of it: The Times reports things began to sour slightly after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, a move Kushner pushed for, but says the president's biggest bone to pick with Kushner relates to his sister, who was filmed trying to woo Chinese investment in a Kushner Companies condo project in Jersey City by trumpeting the availability of EB-5 visas.
  • What's next: In a column for the Guardian, Walter Shapiro suggests "strain" with the president is nothing compared to what's coming due to the FBI scrutiny the White House senior adviser is now under. Kushner's "life in the coming months and maybe years will be a study in misery," he writes. "He will probably spend more time with his personal lawyer ... than with Ivanka or his children. Whether it is an appearance under oath on Capitol Hill or the inevitable FBI interview, every sentence Kushner utters will bring with it possible legal jeopardy."
  • "Lay low": NBC News quotes a source who says Kushner is being advised by other officials that he "lay low" for a while.
  • Poking at him: Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu of California has called for Kushner to be prosecuted over omissions on his security clearance form, reports the Hill, and he poked at Kushner in a Sunday tweet: "Dear Jared: I have been told that Siberia, Russia has lovely weather this time of the year. You can backpack and back-channel all you want."
  • Others weigh in: Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said Sunday he sees no "big issues" related to Kushner; former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper took an opposite stance.

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