The Washington Post reports that President Donald Trump is letting his son-in-law take the lead in border-wall negotiations with hostile Democrats.
“[Jared] Kushner has emerged as an omnipresent and assertive player in the now-33-day impasse, despite deep skepticism on Capitol Hill about his political abilities and influence, according to more than a dozen Trump associates, lawmakers and others involved in the discussions,” the Post reports.
The article’s headline is “‘Master negotiator’ or ‘nonentity’? Kushner thrusts himself into the middle of shutdown talks.”
But the article includes many skeptical comments from Democrats and Republicans. The article includes a claimed quote from Trump, made during a recent Oval Office meeting:
“Apparently, Jared has become an expert on immigration in the last 48 hours,” Trump said, according to three people familiar with the exchange who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.
Kushner argues he can craft a deal because he has good personal relationships with Democrats:
Kushner, who referred a request for comment to the White House, has told Trump advisers that he has solid relationships with several Democrats, such as Senate Minority Whip Richard J. Durbin (Ill.), and that he can sell a compromise to moderate Democrats and Republicans with whom he built a rapport while working on the criminal-justice bill.
That argument assumes that Kushner’s recent personal relationships can overcome the vast nation-changing political, economic, demographic, and electoral impact of migration, including the election of Trump in 2016 and the current impasse Trump and the D.C. establishment.
The article hints at Kushner’s attempt to ally with business-first advocates and groups, and to suppress the pro-American reformers who helped Trump win the election:
Former House speaker Newt Gingrich, a Trump and Kushner ally who presided over an unpopular shutdown during the Clinton administration, said there is “tension between what Jared is trying to accomplish and what some people in the White House are trying to block.”
“For Jared to succeed, he’s going to have to get control to make sure the legislative language of what comes out from the White House reflects the commitments that are being made,” Gingrich said.
Gingrich is a leader in the Republican Hindu Coalition, which is pushing to expand the hiring of cheap Indian visa-workers in place of American college graduates. At least 500,000 Indian graduate visa-workers now hold middle-class jobs in the United States.
Kushner has repeatedly indicated he wants to work with the establishment groups and advocates who favor high levels of legal immigration. On January 19, for example, he told reporters:
We’ve heard a lot through the course of the last couple of weeks that people are not sure where the President stands on, what he would do or follow through on. Today was important because it laid out – based on the feedback that we’ve received from a lot of the Democratic members — and a lot of the Democratic organizations — what they thought were the necessary components. Also a lot of the editorial boards that we’ve noticed on what would be the right components for a compromise solution to get the necessary border security that the professionals at the Department of Homeland Security have said that they need in order to complete their mission in 2019.
Read the article here.