Donald Trump repeatedly said in private during his presidency that he wanted his daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner removed from their roles as senior White House advisers, according to a new book.
Trump at one point was even, without the couple’s knowledge, “about to write on Twitter” that they’d left their unpaid jobs, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman details in “Confidence Man,” per an advance copy obtained by The Washington Post.
Then-White House chief of staff John Kelly talked Trump down from the tweet, said Haberman, telling Trump he should explain to the family members what he was planning to post first. The couple was reportedly unaware they were not wanted.
Trump agreed to Kelly’s request, said Haberman, but “then never followed up with the conversation.”
But Trump repeatedly gave instructions “to essentially fire the pair” during meetings with Kelly and then-White House counsel Don McGahn, said Haberman. The pair only resisted following through with Trump’s request amid fears “he would not back them once his daughter and son-in-law pushed back.”
It’s not clear if Trump was just showboating with his comments or actually intended to dismiss his relatives, or why he wanted them canned.
Ivanka Trump and Kushner did not take paychecks for their White House roles, claiming it was a public duty, but still reportedly raked in hundreds of millions of dollars in outside income during their service.