June 25, 2017

US Justice Department's green light for Kushner to advise Trump

24 January 2017, 12:47 | Sue Hudson

Lorenzo Bevilaqua ABC TelevisionABC's Deborah Roberts interviews Ivanka Trump at Trump Tower New York on Monday Jan. 16 2017

Lorenzo Bevilaqua  ABC TelevisionABC's Deborah Roberts interviews Ivanka Trump at Trump Tower New York on Monday Jan. 16 2017

Joshua Kushner, the brother of the newly sworn-in senior adviser to President Trump Jared Kushner, was spotted at the women's march talking with several participants.

On Saturday, the Justice Department said that this story checks out.

'In choosing his personal staff, the President enjoys an unusual degree of freedom, which Congress found suitable to the demands of his office, ' the document claims.

Jared Kushner, son-in-law to Donald Trump and husband of Ivanka Trump, will speak to Justin Trudeau and his ministers, according to an unnamed source.

In a 14-page opinion signed Friday, a longtime career lawyer in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel said that the president's special hiring authority exempted White House positions from a 1967 law barring the president from employing relatives at a federal agency.

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Kushner's role came under scrutiny for potential conflicts of interests, and the Justice Department was requested to issue a definitive ruling on the matter. But this is not enough to satisfy the critics who say that Kushner may still give advice related to his own financial interests or offer access to the White House to business associates. Kushner has resigned as CEO of his family's real estate company and as publisher of the iconic New York Observer.

The law specifically identifies the president as one of the "public officials" the law applies to and a "son-in-law" as a prohibited relative.

"Kushner will work closely with chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Stephen Bannon to execute president-elect Trump's agenda", Trump's team said in announcing the position.

The opinion, published on the department's website on Saturday, was dated January 20, an indication it was researched and written prior to Trump's inauguration. He also, in 2015, was presented with an award for excellence in government service from the DC Bar.

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