Jared Kushner — publisher of the New York Observer, husband of Ivanka Trump — wants everyone to know something about Donald Trump: "My father-in-law is not an anti-Semite."

Good to know. Why bring it up? Because Observer entertainment reporter Dana Schwartz wrote an open letter to Kushner on Tuesday in which she called the presumptive Republican presidential nominee an ant—.

Wait a sec. No, she didn't. Here's an excerpt from Schwartz's letter:

Your father-in-law's repeated accidental winks to the white supremacist community is perhaps a savvy political strategy if the neo-Nazis are considered a sizable voting block — I confess, I haven't done my research on that front. But when you stand silent and smiling in the background, his Jewish son-in-law, you're giving his most hateful supporters tacit approval. Because maybe Donald Trump isn't anti-Semitic. To be perfectly honest, I don't think he is. But I know many of his supporters are, and they believe for whatever reason that Trump is the candidate for them.

Schwartz went on to point out that anti-Semites such as former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke interpreted Trump's recent Star of David tweet as one of those "winks to the white supremacist community."

Schwartz essentially made the same nuanced argument CNN commentator Van Jones made last month during one of his epic on-air clashes with pro-Trump counterpart Jeffrey Lord. Jones said he doesn't think Trump is actually racist but is a "racial opportunist" — meaning "he says things that are racist," as Jones put it, to appeal to people who truly hold racist beliefs.

Schwartz's point was that Trump probably isn't really an anti-Semite but that the imagery in his tweet — "a six-sided star ... juxtaposed with money and accusations of financial dishonesty," in her description — functioned as a coded message (You're welcome in my campaign!) to people who hate Jews.

Kushner's rebuttal, published Wednesday afternoon, made clear that he wants no part of this complex debate. After asserting that his father-in-law is not an anti-Semite, Kushner added this: "It's that simple, really. Donald Trump is not anti-Semitic, and he's not a racist."

Well then. "It's that simple." As long as Trump doesn't share the bigoted views of his most hateful backers, who cares if he "winks" at them?

Give the Observer credit for publishing this back-and-forth between Schwartz and Kushner. Last summer, early in the campaign, editor Ken Kurson decided the paper would avoid covering Trump whenever possible because of what he called "the appearance of a conflict." Observer journalists were certainly in a tough position.

In March, New York Post columnist John Podhoretz speculated that Kurson had written a speech Trump delivered to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

Kurson later said "wrote" was an exaggeration but confirmed to the Huffington Post's Michael Calderone that he had read a draft of the speech; Kushner also provided input. The Observer announced at the time of this admission that it would cover Trump after all — and attempt to treat him like any other candidate. Kurson declined to discuss the evolution of the policy.

It's still awkward for the Observer to cover Trump, but no one can say the paper isn't willing to print criticism of the publisher's favorite candidate — or even the publisher himself.

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