The East Wing of the White House, typically reserved for the First Lady of the United States, is being prepared for Donald Trump’s oldest daughter Ivanka, though no official role has been announced yet. Ivanka’s husband Jared Kushner is also expected to be given a role in the White House, and Donald has hinted to the New York Times he thinks Kushner would be useful in negotiating peace deals with the Middle East.
Kellyanne Conway says it’s “a fair assessment” the pair will be given roles in the Trump Administration.
This news makes many people uneasy, especially former White House Labor Secretary, Rhodes Scholar, economist and filmmaker Robert Reich.
On Facebook Reich wrote:
Is anyone else uneasy about Trump’s daughter and son-in-law becoming White House advisors to President Trump? It’s not just their extensive Trump business holdings and conflicts of interest that worry me. It’s also their family ties.
“We’ve elected a president, not a king.
Reich explains how Trump’s move to bring in family members to important roles in his Administration reminds him more of a monarchy than a republic, writing:
A president hires advisors. A king bestows privileges and titles on his family.
“A president wants advice from experts who will tell him what’s in America’s best interest. A king wants advice from people who will tell him what’s in his own personal best interest.
“A president assembles a White House staff. A king assembles a court.
“A president dismisses advisors who don’t perform. A king doesn’t get rid of family members, except when he cuts off their heads.
Trump likes to surround himself with “yes men” and his administration is stacked with them. Trump likes to believe he knows more than our generals about ISIS; he knows more than the CIA about cyber attacks from Russia; he knew more than the FBI about Clinton’s emails. He’s already shown himself to be dismissive of experts, yet as an inexperienced politician, he’s also entirely dependent on them.
The last thing our country needs is for him to top off his ass kissing staff with his closest family members.
Federal Anti-Nepotism laws typically prevent presidents from hiring on relatives, but Conway says lawyers are digging through the laws and finding “encouraging results” that would allow Ivanka and Kushner in on loopholes to those laws. The office of First Lady, for example, would not require a confirmation hearing because the position isn’t seen as being a “government employee.” Kushner would be more difficult to bring on staff. However, if he worked without pay from the treasury he could be hired. Both Ivanka and Kushner would have to separate themselves from their business holdings.
The anti-nepotism laws were drafted in 1967 after John F. Kennedy appointed his brother Robert to Attorney General who lacked legal experience. You can bet Republicans howled back then. Do you see any of them howling now?
But I guess this kingly-type of behavior should be expected from a man who has sat on a golden throne atop his golden tower for so long.