In a report issued by transition officials on Monday, Jared Kushner, who is President-elect Donald Trump’s son-in-law, will become a senior White House adviser and work on trade deals and the Middle East. This marks a rare case of a close presidential family member taking on a major role.
Kushner is Ivanka’s husband, aged 35, he’ll be taking up the job after receiving legal counsel he would not be violating a U.S. anti-nepotism law based on court rulings that the statute does not apply to the White House. However, the position does not require the confirmation of the U.S. Senate.
Ivanka Trump has been a trusted adviser to the president-elect. However, she’ll not handle any role in her father’s White House, instead, she’ll focus on family issues. As they prepare for their move to Washington from New York, both Trumps will undertake substantial divestments of their financial portfolios.
A lawyer for Kushner and Senior transition officials have laid out the arrangement in a conference call with reporters. The incoming White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and senior strategist Steve Bannon will work closely with Kushner in advising President-elect Trump, the officials said that the trade policy and the Middle East will be first thing that they’ll focus on.
President-elect Trump pledged to rewrite international trade deals so as to make them more favorable to the United States and he’s also adopted a pro-Israel stance with a vow to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
A New York lawyer, Jamie Gorelick, who previously served as deputy attorney general for the Democratic President Bill Clinton, said that Kushner would not violate a 1967 anti-nepotism statute.
"I'm not saying that there isn't an argument on the other side, and I respect the people who have made the argument on the other side. I just think we have the better argument," she said.
The former Deputy attorney general said that back in 1978, Congress authorized the president to hire personnel for the White House office without regard to federal personnel laws such as anti-nepotism statute, adding that the Justice Department had described that authority as unfettered.
"Even without that law, two D.C. Circuit decisions strongly suggest that the White House Office is not an 'agency' under the anti-nepotism statute, a position supported by the views of the Justice Department under Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush," Gorelick said.