Jared Kushner inadvertently insults ‘peculiar’ Trump while pushing back on Mar-a-Lago raid

Backhanded compliment comes as ex-president urges followers to buy his son-in-law’s book

John Bowden
Washington DC
Wednesday 24 August 2022 20:09 BST
Jared Kushner denies being Mar-a-Lago mole

Jared Kushner’s media tour to promote the sale of his new book, Breaking History, slogs on while the former senior White House aide continues to face questions about his father-in-law’s handling of classified materials and apparent storage of documents at Mar-a-Lago.

Mr Kushner appeared on Fox News on Wednesday and was questioned by the network’s Bill Hemmer about whether it was wrong for the ex-president to have removed classified materials from the White House for the purpose of holding them in defiance of the National Archives at Mar-a-Lago.

His interview comes on the heels of the revelation that the Justice Department took another batch of documents from Mar-a-Lago earlier this year, with the total stash totalling around 700 pages.

In defence of Mr Trump’s methods, Mr Kushner asserted that his father-in-law “governed in a very peculiar way”, which he has long argued is a unique positive characteristic of the Trump administration. He carefully insisted, however, that he had no knowledge of the files’ contents despite his senior West Wing position and status as a member of the Trump family.

The assertion by Mr Kushner that he did not know what was in the seized files is clearly an attempt to skirt any potential legal liability in the Justice Department’s investigation of the situation; however, it may seek to weaken the defence of his father-in-law as it becomes increasingly clear that only a few people surrounding the former president including Donald Trump himself knew of their contents. If the files are found to have been taken illegally, those attempts by Mr Kushner to evade blame spell obvious trouble for the former president.

Mr Trump’s allies have offered a number of defences, some contradictory, in response to the unprecedented and shocking FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago earlier this month. The former president’s team have waged war against the DoJ and FBI, accusing the agencies of planting incriminating evidence in the seized files and stealing documents that were protected by attorney-client privilege.

As a result the FBI has reported a rise in the number of threats directed online against federal agents and even saw one man attempt to assault an FBI field office in Ohio, leading to his death in a shootout with law enforcement.

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