White House Chief of Staff Memo from John Kelly to McGahn, Hagin, Sessions, Coats and Wray – “Re: Improvements to the Clearance Process” (16.02.2018)
I write what I like.
“3 U.S. Code § 105 – Assistance and services for the President: (e) Assistance and services authorized pursuant to this section to the President are authorized to be provided to the spouse of the President in connection with assistance provided by such spouse to the President in the discharge of the President’s duties and responsibilities. If the President does not have a spouse, such assistance and services may be provided for such purposes to a member of the President’s family whom the President designates” (Cornell Law School).
I don’t know about you, but it’s just one of these days, where you see entitlement in the New York Gang or the Trump Administration. This was made and prepared for the President Donald J. Trump, as he was swearing-in and starting his term. Because the Office of Government Ethics (OGE), who is in-charge of checking and making the sure the personnel and staff is following the codes and procedures for their roles in government. Seriously, the OGE Lawyer worked the laws in his favor, even when I struggle to see it. My first question after reading the US Code 105 Title 5(d), did the President loose his wife? Therefore, because of his tragic loss, he needed counsel from son-in-law Jared Kushner and oldest daughter Ivanka Trump inside the White House. How can you spell the code wrong, “If the President does not have a spouse”. True she was in New York the first months of the Presidency. Still, she was still his spouse, meaning that “he had”. But before I rant, take a look into key parts of the reasoning for the appointments of his family inside the White House!
“Section 3110 of title 5, also known as the anti-nepotism statute, states that “[a] public official may not appoint, employ, promote, advance, or advocate for appointment, employment, promotion, or advancement, in or to a civilian position in the agency in which he is serving or over which he exercises jurisdiction or control any individual who is a relative of the public official.” 5 U.S.C. § 3110(b). The statute expressly identifies the President as one of the “public official[s]” subject to the prohibition, and a son-in-law is a covered “relative.” Id. § 3110(a)(2), (a)(3). Moreover, under Article II of the Constitution, the President exercises “jurisdiction or control” over the White House Office as well as over the rest of the Executive Branch. See Myers v. United States, 272 U.S. 52, 163–64 (1926); Inspector General Legislation, 1 Op. O.L.C. 16, 17 (1977). Less certain is whether the White House Office is an “agency”—a term that section 3110 defines to include an “Executive agency,” thereby calling up the definition of “Executive agency” generally applicable to title 5, see 5 U.S.C. § 3110(a)(1)(A); id. § 105. But whether or not the White House Office meets this definition (a subject to which we will return in Part II, infra), we believe that the President’s special hiring authority in 3 U.S.C. § 105(a) permits him to make appointments to the White House Office that the anti-nepotism statute might otherwise forbid” (Koffsky, P:2, 2017).
“A President wanting a relative’s advice on governmental matters therefore has a choice: to seek that advice on an unofficial, ad hoc basis without conferring the status and imposing the responsibilities that accompany formal White House positions; or to appoint his relative to the White House under title 3 and subject him to substantial restrictions against conflicts of interest. Cf. AAPS, 997 F.2d at 911 n.10 (declining, after holding that the First Lady qualifies as a “full-time officer or employee” of the government under FACA, to decide her status under the conflict of interest statutes). In choosing his personal staff, the President enjoys an unusual degree of freedom, which Congress found suitable to the demands of his office. Any appointment to that staff, however, carries with it a set of legal restrictions, by which Congress has regulated and fenced in the conduct of federal officials” (Koffsky, P: 16-17, 2017).
I will not jumping jacks around this OGE Lawyer Koffsky, but office that is run by the President is an Executive Office, that issues Executive Orders and Executive Memorandums. That if followed by current law and within provisions within the state because legal and acts that all citizens has to follow. To subject the White House into a sublime role of the state is demeaning, even if he needs support of the branches of government like the Courts and Congress. But that doesn’t make the White House into a playhouse for playboy bunnies, its the place where executive orders and legal minds meet to determine the future of the Republic. It’s insulting that Koffsky is belittling the office and the White House, so it fits legally President role and his ability to appoint family members.
Yes, the President is allowed to seek advice and that ad-hock with family members. That is without doubt, but that is different ones in while speak with an uncle in Louisiana before making a decision that matters for both United States and the World itself. There is problematic to hire family into the White House, as their supposed restrictions and the boundaries of their roles. Since the family bond will not be cut, but be ever present in the decision making.
That Jared Kushner is a Public Official is clear with his title and responsibilities, as a Senior Advisor to the President, who is working on American Innovation, Peace in the Middle East and combating the Opioid crisis in the United States. Ivanka Trump is by title the Assistance to the President. Both of them has had a public role and been acting as Public Officials. They have been there, traveling with the President and even taking his place when he was tired or wanted to relax. Like Ivanka Trump did during the G-20 in July 2017, when the not-elected family member took the seat G20 Leaders Table. So her assistance goes further than ordinary public officials. Since, this sort of role would usually end on Secretary of State and the Vice-President. However, it isn’t the case in the matter of Trump Family.
“Enforcement. While the statutory language bars the appointment of relatives as well as the acceptance of such appointments, enforcement of the prohibition may be limited. The remedy expressly provided for violating this prohibition states that the appointed individual “is not entitled to pay, and money may not be paid from the Treasury as pay” for that person. The statute itself does not require nor does it provide expressly for removal of the individual from the federal civilian position. As noted above, the provision was directed at stopping the practice of placing relatives on the government payroll, and thus the law assures that a relative so appointed may not be paid from federal funds for any such service. The statute likewise does not provide a penalty for the public official who appointed the individual. However, it may be noted that for some rank-and-file positions, not of a confidential or policy making nature, the appointment of a relative may involve a “prohibited personnel practice” by the appointing official” (CRS Report & Analysis, 2016).
Here is another one giving leeway for the possible hiring of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, that is if they are in their roles unpaid and with ranks. Even, that is an issue with the role of the Senior Advisor Kushner and all his positions, even the clearances he needs to be able to fulfill his duty at the White House. Ivanka has also been part of the close-knitted leadership of his fathers. She been part of meetings and such. So both of them has been have been close to confidential material most likely, as they work so close with their relative, the President.
Just like covered in People Magazine in January 2017: “Though Kushner’s appointment does not require Senate confirmation, it is a controversial one: Anti-nepotism laws forbid the hiring of relatives to Cabinet positions, but are less clear on whether they can be appointed to White House staff roles. In American history, anti-nepotism laws are actually a relatively recent development: They were put into place in 1967 by then-President Lyndon B. Johnson not long after one of his predecessor’s appointments raised eyebrows” (Pearl, 2017).
So even if the law and the Anti-nepotism law are put in place to accept family members in White House roles. Still, the nepotism is in full affect. There is no half-step on that. The United States should have a hard time accepting the appointment of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump as Senior Advisor and Assistant to the President. All of this has entitled them and given them a special role in the Executive Office of the United States. What is clear by the U.S. Code 105, title 5(d) and will always stand out for the provision in the code that said this: “If the President does not have a spouse, such assistance and services may be provided for such purposes to a member of the President’s family whom the President designates”.
The President has a spouse, his third wife, Melanie, therefore he doe not need such assistance and services. Instead, they are using the titles in the anti-nepotism statutes, they can most likely not be as valuable as these words. However, Koffsky wrote this: “or to appoint his relative to the White House under title 3 and subject him to substantial restrictions against conflicts of interest”. These words are saying that its set substantial restrictions to the office, even as the President has let them be a vital part of his term, Kushner is nearly saving half of America and the Middle-East. Ivanka is publicly part abroad and in Washington. It’s not like they are restricted in that manner, but creating conflicts of interests. That should worry anyone caring about the honest of the public office.
Therefore it was striking what Jason Chafetz said in January 2017: “According to Josh Chafetz, a professor at Cornell Law School and an expert in constitutional law and legislative procedure, the White House is not regulated in the same way as other administrative agencies. “The bigger issue for the administration is not so much about the technical bounds of these nepotism laws, but it just looks bad,” Chafetz said. “I don’t think there’s anything legal that can be done in terms of the appointment. It just looks like there’s a pattern of cronyism that has emerged, especially in conjunction with the cabinet appointments.” (Delkic & Mallin, 2017).
It’s enough. Peace.
Koffsky, Daniel L. – ‘Application of the Anti-Nepotism Statute to a Presidential Appointment in the White House Office’ (20.01.2017)
Cornell Law School – ‘U.S. Code › Title 3 › Chapter 2 › § 105’ link: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/3/105
CRS Report & Analysis – ‘The Federal Anti-Nepotism Statute: Limits on Appointing, Hiring, and Promoting Relatives’ (12.01.2016) link: https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/nepotism.pdf
Delkic, Melina & Mallin, Alex – ‘Nepotism Laws Don’t Apply to Jared Kushner Appointment, DOJ Says’ (21.01.2017) link: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/nepotism-laws-apply-jared-kushner-appointment-doj/story?id=44951811
Pearl, Diana – ‘Donald Trump’s Son-in-Law Has Hillary Clinton to Thank for Skirting JFK-Inspired Nepotism Rules’ (11.01.2017) link: http://people.com/politics/jared-kushner-nepotism-laws-donald-trump/
“It is only with the development of political institutions like the modern state that humans begin to organize themselves and learn to cooperate in a manner that transcends friends and family. When such institutions break down, we revert to patronage and nepotism as a default form of sociability.”
― Francis Fukuyama
Well, President Donald J. Trump cannot handle being ordinary or being honest. He has to lie and deceive, it is in his nature and his past. Therefore, he can like a buffoon blaming the Clinton for having a private e-mail server, while he has sensitive information and such on an android. So, it is not like the President himself is a careful as he should be. Not that he really cares. He never cared about anything else than his own bloated image.
President Trump, the so-called Conservative Republican, has gone and done a few unthinkable things. First he used his sons and oldest daughter as part of the transition team, as well as the sons of Vice-President Mike Pence and later hired Security Official Mike Flynn, who was all part of the team! Well, for Donald that is not enough, his bar for nepotism isn’t big-wig enough.
His little trust in other people and his own judgment was so weak he had to have his son-in-law Jared Kushner and daughter Ivanka Trump at the meeting of the Japanese Prime Minister Shino Abe. As the New York Times wrote: “After Mr. Trump’s transition office was asked by The New York Times about allowing Ms. Trump to attend the meeting with the Japanese prime minister, an individual close to the family, who said she did not have authorization to provide her name, hinted that Ms. Trump would not be attending meetings like this in the future” (…) “Mr. Trump has always encouraged Ivanka and his children to attend meetings with him,” the person close to the family said. “This meeting in question was very informal. However, they obviously need to adjust to the new realities at hand, which they will” (Lipton, 2016).
Still, this has not stopped the family matters to become State matters. Something that should worry the world and Americans, as the entangled and the inter-state affairs colluding with personal business, can likely happen. Since the Trump family doesn’t care about ethics or general conduct as long as the striving companies they are running is gaining profits.
In January the Son-in-Law was hired by the President to an advisory role:
“Mr. Kushner has been described by numerous transition staff members as the first among equals in Mr. Trump’s high command. His new title belies the sweeping influence he will have behind the scenes” (…) “The soft-spoken Mr. Kushner has often been described as having a calming effect on Mr. Trump, who is notorious for yelling at staff members during moments of tension. Mr. Kushner became the de facto campaign manager in the spring, and his influence with Mr. Trump has expanded rapidly” (Thrush & Haberman, 2017).
So after being in the campaign team, being in the consultation meetings with foreign leaders, the couple was part of the leadership. Still, only the son-in-law got a title and office inside the White House. That should be bringing enough family matters into the hollow chambers. That Jared Kushner becomes on the same level as others and created a role around the President proves the critical problems with this appointment. It would be if Vice-President Mike Pence hired his son as a staff member and an under the office of Vice President.
So if that was enough when the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the White house in February 2017, into the second month of the Trump Presidency. So this was written about the event days ahead:
“In this Feb. 1, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump, accompanied by his daughter Ivanka, waves as they walk to board Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington. According to officials, Ivanka Trump, who has been a vocal advocate for policies benefiting working women, was involved in recruiting participants for a round table discussion that will be held Monday, Feb. 13, about women in the workforce. President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will participate in the round table” (Vucci, 2017). The pictures of this round-table debate that went viral, was of this one where Ivanka Trump was participating with the foreign Prime Minister. This shows the lack of integrity in the new Administration, but Trump will continue.
Just as the March month arrives and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel came to visit the White House, Ivanka Trump got “work training” as she participated in another state visit for her father without official clearance or jurisdiction, as the procedure and protocol of state doesn’t matter to this President. He thinks his position is all family. If Barrack Obama had hired or had his wife in closed door meetings with foreign leaders; he would have cause havoc and storm, but President Trump is allowed to do this without to much fuzz, except for dress-code and how people looks at Ivanka.
“In the end, Angela Merkel couldn’t hide it. Seated next to Ivanka Trump at a White House meeting with business leaders on Friday, the German leader tilted her head in the first daughter’s direction as Ivanka spoke, a look of bewilderment tinged with disdain enveloping her face” (…) “Why are you here,” Merkel, never a good pretender, seemed to be thinking” (Karinitsching, 2017). Everybody should understand Merkel, not like Ivanka is a serious politician or civil servants, she is daddy’s favorite daughter. That is known for the world and not disgraceful to say.
That this isn’t enough? Well, for Trump and Trump Administration the Nepotism has to be in Authoritarian leadership worthy, not only at meeting and being beside the President, also appointed, as the daughter haven’t been appointed like the husband Jared Kushner. Still, she has been a key player in the rooms of foreign affairs and foreign policy. Because of the level that President Trump has in her. Still, that she gets a place before career officials and others who has done this as their profession, show’s the lack of understand of what State work and how diplomacy works.
So that the news today that Ivanka get clearance to sensitive and confidential information, as well as a office inside the White House without being appointed proves the Nepotism. Surely, soon could Eric Trump and Donald Trump Junior even get hired by their father inside the White House. As well as Tiffany Trump could be spokesperson for the father instead of Kellyanne Conway. That is just the next step.
“Ivanka Trump will have her own office in the West Wing of the White House that comes with a security clearance for classified information, although she will not have an official title, according to a White House official” (…) “Trump will still comply with the ethics rules for government appointees though, even if she technically isn’t one, Trump’s attorney Jamie Gorelick told the Associated Press” (Abramson, 2017). So the family lawyer have dropped the news to the AP and therefore verified the news yesterday.
The family lawyer Gorelick, who has addressed the Trump Organization and other close connected businesses of the family. Therefore, that he did do it proves the capacity and the levels of family matters instead of skills or career.
That President Trump hires Ivanka and Jared inside the White House. Donald, doesn’t care about the legal or ethical perspective, nor about the jurisdiction of state or even common sense. Even as protocol or even justification of this entangled between the family and the Executive. That this could be done inside the Trump Organization is more reasonable and understandable, as the Private Business and Corporate policies are different, than how a State and Government supposed to work.
President Trump deserves to be sanctioned for this, as this words should be key:
“The key for the White House will be to ensure not just that they recruit the best people for the top job at an agency, but to make sure that agency leaders are viewed as a team rather than individuals. The secretary, deputy secretary, chief of staff and other top agency leaders should all complement each other in terms of both expertise and personality. For example, if the secretary is someone who is most comfortable acting as the “face” of an agency and policy agenda, then the deputy secretary should be the one to manage the agency on a day-to-day basis as the chief operating officer. Keeping this in mind when making specific appointments will help build a cohesive, well-functioning unit that will provide effective, unified leadership at the agency” (Center of Presidential Transition – ‘Presidential Transition Guide’ P: 74, 2016).
So, President Trump thinks more individuals and family, more than protocol and the ethical perspective of how he is involving the family into state affairs. That the State becomes mixed with family is not a trait of the United States, but now the Trump Organization and Trump Administration is closer than before. If and when there will be more scandals, more nepotism and misuse of the power… will come, but when is only about question of time. Peace.
Abramson, Alana – ‘ Ivanka Trump Will Have West Wing Office, But No Official Title’ (20.03.2017) link: http://fortune.com/2017/03/20/ivanka-trump-west-wing-office/
Karinitschinig, Matthew – ‘Merkel’s Ivanka moment’ (18.03.2017) link: http://www.politico.eu/article/merkels-ivanka-moment/
Lipton, Eric – ‘Ivanka Trump’s Presence at Meeting With Japan’s Leader Raises Questions’ (18.11.2016) link: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/19/us/politics/ivanka-trump-shinzo-abe.html?_r=0
Thrush, Glenn & Haberman, Maggie – ‘Jared Kushner Named Senior White House Adviser to Donald Trump’ (09.01.2017) link: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/09/us/jared-kushner-senior-adviser-white-house-trump.html
Vucci, Evan – ‘Trump, Trudeau to discuss women in workforce’ (12.02.2017) link: http://www.am1250theanswer.com/news/politics/trump-trudeau-to-discuss-women-in-workforce