Jared Kushner, the former first son-in-law, and former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin wasted no time in making money off of their government jobs as they were on their way out the door at the start of 2021. According to a report in the New York Times, the two met with future investors on official trips to the Middle East.
They made the trip purportedly to promote the new Abraham Fund, a U.S. government-sponsored program that was established in the wake of the signing of the Abraham Accords. Jared Kushner and Steve Mnuchin said that they said would raise $3 billion for projects around the Middle East. But once they left office the fund floundered.
But Jared Kushner certainly took advantage of his trips to the region. Recently his VC firm Affinity Partners raised $2 billion from the Saudi Arabian Sovereign wealth fund called the Public Investment Fund. And Steve Mnuchin has also been very successful at raising money for his business ventures since leaving office too.
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This sort of behavior would come as no surprise to Kellyanne Conway, the former Trump advisor, who reportedly is no fan of Jared Kushner’s. She slammed him repeatedly in her new book “Here’s the Deal.”
Most observers said that Jared Kushner did little or nothing in his capacity as a senior White House advisor for four years. He was often reported to have tried to insert himself into discussions on all manner of important issues while lacking any knowledge or experience related to the matter at hand.
As Kellyanne Conway described it, according to a book excerpt obtained by the Washington Post, “There was no subject he [Jared Kushner] considered beyond his expertise. Criminal justice reform. Middle East peace. The southern and northern borders. Veterans and opioids. Big Tech and small business.” And she also described Kushner as “shrewd and calculating.”
In her book Conway also referred to Jared Kushner as “a man of knowing nods, quizzical looks, and sidebar inquiries” and said he knew that “no matter how disastrous a personnel change or legislative attempt may be, he was unlikely to be held accountable for it.”
Jared Kushner and Steve Mnuchin’s detractors are calling their behavior at best unethical and at worst possibly illegal. But their supporters, of course, see this as just good business sense.