Donald Trump will officially name his son-in-law Jared Kushner as a senior White House advisor, according to reports, codifying Kushner’s key place in Trump’s inner circle and raising questions about Kushner’s conflicts of interest.
Kushner and his wife Ivanka have emerged as two of Trump’s most important advisors, part of a tight inner circle along with advisor Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller that are the few who Trump listens to on most issues. Kushner especially has played role of consigliere to his father-in-law, helping shape his campaign and make key staffing and policy decisions both on the trail and since Trump won.
Kushner is CEO of Kushner companies, a real estate company that has a number of problematic global deals. The company does business with a Chinese company, Anbang Insurance, that has been barred from buying some U.S. hotels due to national security concerns. Kushner’s business also has a loan from an Israeli bank that is under investigation by the Justice Department.
The appointment also may violate a federal law that bars federal officials from hiring relatives to work in the agencies they lead, though Trump and Kushner’s lawyers argue that the White House doesn’t fall under that law because it’s not a federal agency.
Kushner’s attorney promised he’d resign from his company and untangle himself from potential conflicts of interest before he takes the job.
“Mr. Kushner is committed to complying with federal ethics laws and we have been consulting with the Office of Government Ethics regarding the steps he would take,” Kushner lawyer Jamie Gorelick said in a statement to NBC.
Trump told reporters at Trump Tower on Monday that he’d discuss his son-in-law’s planned role in his administration at a press conference Wednesday.