Without the usual pomp of an Oval Office handshake or even the de rigueur “JOBS!” tweet, President Trump directly created new employment for an American this week — an American woman, no less. In a quiet announcement from the White House, it was revealed that the ranks of the unemployed fell from 7,528,000 in February to 7,527,999 with Ivanka Trump’s acceptance of a formal position at the White House.
The announcement brings to an end a very weird and lengthy dance during which the first daughter went from denying that she’d be involved in the administration to acting as a sort-of first lady to, last week, advising her father informally — but, after concerns about her adherence to ethics rules were raised, acceding to a formal unpaid position. (Luckily for the president’s economic numbers, that one unpaid job won’t move the needle on wages much.) The position’s title: assistant to the president.
While Ivanka Trump has attracted a lot of the attention, it’s important to note that much of the rest of the president’s family also will remain linked to him and his administration in some way — including the two sons who are supposed to be walled-off, running the family business.
Jared Kushner. (Ivanka Trump’s husband and the president’s son-in-law.) Kushner, as most readers will know, serves as a senior adviser to the president. His hiring was the trigger for the Justice Department’s formal determination that the White House was exempt from federal prohibitions against hiring family members. In his position, Kushner has been involved in any number of upper-level decisions the president has made.
Donald Trump Jr. (Trump’s son.) Don Jr. will help lead the Trump Organization while his father serves as president. Trump himself resigned from leadership positions with the organization to avoid conflicts of interest that might arise if he were asked to make a decision about something that might affect his company. It’s implied, then, that he will be insulated from information about what his company is doing. That said, USA Today reported Wednesday that a gun rights coalition announced at the tail end of the presidential campaign that it expects to leverage Don Jr.’s relationship with the White House to convey policy priorities to the president.
“As it was explained to me, this whole thing is about providing policy and legislative recommendations for the new administration through Donald Trump Jr.,” said John Boch, co-chairman of the gun rights coalition and head of the nonprofit Guns Save Life, Inc.
Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) echoed the assumption that Don Jr. would provide political capital. “The best of all worlds would be that I get either Donald Trump Jr. or Chris Cox to say the coalition … actually supports the bill that I’m promoting,” he told the newspaper.
Eric Trump. (Trump’s son.) Eric Trump’s been tasked with helping Don Jr. lead the Trump Organization. Last week, it was reported that he would still maintain contact with his father — as you might expect — but that the contact probably would include regular updates on how the business is doing.
Forbes’s Dan Alexander spoke to Eric Trump, who said that there was a “clear separation of church and state that we maintain” in regard to isolating his father from the business. And yet, he would provide Trump with updates “on the bottom line, profitability reports and stuff like that” every quarter or so.
“I talk to him a lot. We’re pretty inseparable,” Eric Trump said.
Lara Trump. (Eric Trump’s wife and the president’s daughter-in-law.) On Wednesday, it was announced that Lara Trump would take a new position as well, serving as a senior consultant to a company called Giles-Parscale, which does Web design and digital marketing. You may know the name Parscale from the campaign. Brad Parscale served as Trump’s go-to digital strategist, working with the campaign on the development of its online advertising.
Lara Trump’s background is in television, having served as a producer for “Inside Edition.” Her role with Giles-Parscale? According to the Associated Press, she will “serve as a liaison … to Trump’s ongoing campaign.”
The job creation continues apace.