The Jury Talks Back

3/21/2017

Ivanka Trump To Be President Trump’s “Eyes And Ears” From Office In The West Wing

Filed under: Uncategorized — Dana @ 5:51 am

[guest post by Dana]

Before you jump to defend this, tell me how you felt when President Clinton appointed Hillary Clinton to be in charge of overhauling the nation’s health-care system in the early 90’s? And consider how you think you would be feeling right about now, had Hillary Clinton had won the election and given Chelsea an office in the West Wing, along with a security clearance and government-issued communication devices?

So, now this:

The powerful first daughter has secured her own office on the West Wing’s second floor — a space next to senior adviser Dina Powell, who was recently promoted to a position on the National Security Council. She is also in the process of obtaining a security clearance and is set to receive government-issued communications devices this week.

In everything but name, Trump is settling in as what appears to be a full-time staffer in her father’s administration, with a broad and growing portfolio — except she is not being sworn in, will hold no official position and is not pocketing a salary, her attorney said.

Trump’s role, according to her attorney Jamie Gorelick, will be to serve as the president’s “eyes and ears” while providing broad-ranging advice, not just limited to women’s empowerment issues. “I will continue to offer my father my candid advice and counsel, as I have for my entire life,” Ivanka Trump said in a statement Monday. “While there is no modern precedent for an adult child of the president, I will voluntarily follow all of the ethics rules placed on government employees.”

“Having an adult child of the president who is actively engaged in the work of the administration is new ground,” Gorelick conceded in an interview on Monday. “Our view is that the conservative approach is for Ivanka to voluntarily comply with the rules that would apply if she were a government employee, even though she is not.” A spokeswoman for Ivanka Trump said her role was signed off on by the White House counsel’s office, and the conflict issues were “worked through” with the office of government ethics.

Addressing possible conflicts of interest, Gorelick cautioned:

“The one thing I would like to be clear on: we don’t believe it eliminates conflicts in every way. She has the conflicts that derive from the ownership of this brand. We’re trying to minimize those to the extent possible.”

Gorelick argued that the area is murky because outstanding contracts with third party vendors mean that Ivanka Trump cannot simply close her business — those vendors could continue using her brand. She also can’t sell the business, her attorney argued, because the buyer would have the right to license her name and potentially create other ethical issues.

Instead, Trump will be distancing herself, as much as possible, from the day-to-day operations of the Ivanka Trump brand and convey her interests to a trust.

The trust, Gorelick said, will be controlled by her brother-in-law, Josh Kushner, and her sister-in-law, Nicole Meyer, who will be prohibited from entering the brand into any agreements with foreign countries or agencies. Ivanka Trump has appointed Abigail Klem to serve as president of her company, overseeing the day-to-day operations, and prohibited the company from using her image to sell the brand. The first daughter, however, will retain veto power to kill any deals that would be “unacceptable from an ethics perspective.”

You might be thinking that the the obvious upside of this nepotism is that Ivanka Trump could be a steadying influence on her father, as she helps rein in his impulsive and excessive tendencies. That assumes that her influence would be good, and that the right side of the aisle is okay with nepotism just as long as it benefits our side. But clearly that’s not the only influence she would have on this president if she is also advising him in a non-official capacity from an official office in the West Wing.

–Dana

5 Comments »

  1. No to political dynasties, and no to nepotism. No matter which side of the aisle it involves.

    Comment by Dana — 3/21/2017 @ 8:33 am

  2. Jamie Gorelick? Gee …. where have I heard that name before?

    I wonder if Google search might aid me in answering that ….

    Comment by SPQR — 3/21/2017 @ 8:57 am

  3. Yeah, it’s pretty obvious that Gorelick is setting up her third trillion-dollar disaster.

    I say that as a supporter of the God-Emperor.

    Comment by Ingot — 3/21/2017 @ 10:43 am

  4. I’m old enough to remember when Hillary got a West Wing office for her “Hillarycare” push. I remember what I felt about that; she wasn’t elected, so what the heck is she doing there? I felt it was clear nepotism, and abuse of the presidency.

    Why would I feel differently about Trump’s daughter doing basically the same thing?

    Comment by Arizona CJ — 3/21/2017 @ 7:09 pm

  5. ArizonaCJ, well one difference is that Hillary actually led a group that created policy and the legislation to implement it. We have not heard that Ivanka is doing that as yet. Just that she provides “advice”. Her advocacy is supposedly the vague and meaningless “women’s issues”.

    As I think that she would do the same thing without an actual office, I think this is arguably more honest.

    Comment by SPQR — 3/22/2017 @ 7:00 am

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