Tuesday, December 06, 2016

The Kushner vs Christie Battle Is Right Up Trump's Alley


You probably saw this eye-popping Christie polling numbers this morning. New Jersey's Fairleigh Dickinson University's poll found that most registered voters think he should be tried for his role in "Bridgegate." His job approval rating was 18%; disapproval is 73%. Meanwhile, Quinnipiac found his disapproval at an historic 77-19%, "the lowest approval rating for any governor in any state in more than 20 years of the Quinnipiac University Poll." On top of that, 48% of voters say he personally ordered the bridge closing and only 43% say he didn't.
Voters also say 71 - 22 percent that Gov. Christie knew his aides were causing "Bridgegate." His potential involvement in the scandal should be investigated further, 56 percent of voters say, while 41 percent say it has been investigated enough.

Christie gets negative ratings from every party, gender, racial and age group measured, ranging from a negative 39 - 53 percent among Republicans to 9 - 90 percent among Democrats.

Looking at Christie's personal qualities, New Jersey voters say:
71 - 24 percent that he is not honest and trustworthy;
67 - 28 percent that he does not care about their needs and problems;
51 - 46 percent that he does not have strong leadership qualities.
Garden State voters say 69 - 24 percent that President-elect Donald Trump should not offer Christie a job in his administration.
I doubt anyone has to worry about that-- at least not in terms of a Cabinet level position. Christie has been passed over for vice president and for every cabinet position he's set his eyes on. Now he's begging Trump to make him RNC head. Conventional wisdom is that his role in Bridgegate-- and the possibility that he's going to wind up a defendant in investigations and a trial at some point-- has kept him out of any appointments. But to really understand why Christie is out in the cold, you have to understand the yiddish word mekhutonim, basically a male relative by marriage, often a father-in-law, but also a desciptor of the relationship between the families of a married couple, a married couple like Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.

As we explained in August, 2015, Jared's father Charles and The Donald are old cronies from the real estate business. So it should have been no surprise when Charles and his wife Seryl threw the first Trump campaign SuperPAC fundraiser.
Trump, who constantly brags about how rich he is and claims he's financing his own campaign, says he's turning down "millions of dollars." Crooked New Jersey real estate developer Charles Kushner is an old friend of Trump's, and Trump's daughter Ivanka is married to Kushner's son Jared, publisher of the NY Observer. Kushner was convicted of making illegal campaign contributions and of tax evasion and witness tampering, and served a year of a two-year sentence in prison. Last Sunday he had a non-fundraiser for Trump at his palatial $6.7 million beachfront mansion in Long Branch on the Jersey Shore. He gave Trump $100,000. The invitation for the non-fundraiser read: "Seryl and Charles Kushner invite you to their home to meet DONALD TRUMP," with Trump’s name in red letters beneath a pair of American flags, just above "Make America Great Again!" Trump insists it was a just garden party.

Kushner, who has primarily given to Democratic crooks like Chuck Schumer, Joe Lieberman, Jon Corzine and Robert Mendoza, blames Chris Christie-- who was the prosecutor who sent him to prison-- for his legal woes. Maybe the only string attached to the $100,000 he gave to Trump's super-PAC was the satisfaction of seeing Christie get buried. But I doubt it; after all, Kushner is well-known for having once retaliated against his own sister by hiring a prostitute for her husband, taping it and sending her the tape. Trump was happy to get the $100,000, but has never allowed himself to be photographed with his pal Kushner. If someone doesn't want campaign contributions, why does he have a super-PAC? Does it have another function that no one ever told me about?
This week Vanity Fair took a stab at explaining in some depth how and why Jared Kushner has worked successfully against Christie at every turn. No one would say Kushner's career, 'til now, has been marked by brilliance. His dad bought him a place at Harvard for $2.5 million and then made him a principle at the family real estate firm. (Sound familiar?) "Kushner, the scion of a billionaire, has a history of jumping into situations with little experience, making risky calls, and coming out fine on the other end. The Observer, which no longer publishes in print, and hardly wields the influence it used to, is still kicking around... [T]hose who knew Kushner during these formative years wonder if he will make the same mistakes of inexperience and hubris on a far more significant scale. According to a number of people who spoke under the condition of anonymity, out of a desire to keep ties with him or professional obligation, Kushner is a kind, charming, mild-mannered guy who has long been overmatched. But he has been buttressed from failure by his rich, well-known family. As he prepares to take on a role with global significance, what happens when the parachute of his family’s wealth can no longer brace the fall? ... [Kushner] is fiercely loyal to his father, Charles, who pleaded guilty to 18 counts of tax evasion, illegal campaign donations, witness tampering, and setting up his brother-in-law with a prostitute to exact revenge, and was sentenced to two years in an Alabama prison in 2005. Jared, who took the reins of his father’s company at the age of 25 as a result, flew down south to visit Charlie most weekends."
Much has been made of Kushner’s familial loyalty even within the Trump campaign, as reports swirled that he convinced his father-in-law to pass over New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, first as the vice-presidential pick, and again, when he got ousted last month as head of the White House transition team. Christie, as U.S. Attorney, was responsible for putting Charlie Kushner behind bars. A source close to the campaign told me recently that there was a major sticking point in the Christie relationship that Jared could not let go of, and that’s what led him to convince Trump to bypass him.

According to the source, Charlie Kushner was going to be released 28 days early from his sentence. The family was ready, eager, anticipating his arrival home. But he ended up finishing out the time. This source claims that Jared Kushner believes that Christie made sure that Charlie Kushner stayed behind bars for the full sentence, even though the family had already started preparing for his early release. “That really sort of twisted the knife in and he just couldn’t let go of that part of it,” the source said. A source close to Kushner confirmed that this is true.

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At 6:10 AM, Anonymous Hone said...

Lovely that Kushner's father was convicted of a bunch of crimes, including huge tax evasion, and remains a billionaire. In America, the down side to white collar corruption is a slap in the wrist. One of the few good things Christie did was prosecute Kushner senior, and now he will pay for it by being locked out of a position in the federal government, not that I am crying for him. I did not realize Kushner senior was also a real estate magnate. Well, that shoe sure fits. Yet so many black men languish in jail for many years for minor crimes. I hope Obama does a lot of pardons and soon. Of course working people who get paychecks, such as myself, pay all of the taxes we owe. But I assume Kushner senior can never vote again?

Hillary's emails have always paled by a zillion compared to Trump's conflicts of interest and other shady deals as well as his horrendous psychological make up. I imagine he will get a pass by Congress, after all of their screaming about emails. This whole election, for Trump, was always about enriching himself beyond his wildest dreams. The Reps will enable him left, right and sideways. We will see what the Dems are able to stand up for. I am hopeful but too much so. The discrepancy in standards for Dems vs. Reps is wide by a highly significant margin. Trump can grab pussies ad nauseum but Carter was pilloried for having lust in his heart.


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