Even after Trump won the presidency, Jared Kushner was embarrassed by his father-in-law, according to Vicky Ward's terrific new book, "Kushner, Inc."
In a speech to hundreds of New York bankers and businessmen on Dec. 16, 2016, Jared admitted that Trump was "easy to hate from afar." But not to worry, he said, Trump wouldn't be keeping his campaign promises -- especially on immigration.
One banker who heard the speech was appalled, shocked by Jared's arrogance in thinking he could "control" the president.
Joke's on him. Turns out Jared was right. He does control Trump.
And what a blessing that's been.
It was Jared's idea to fire FBI Director James Comey. If Trump hadn't followed that advice, there would have been no independent counsel.
It was also Jared and Ivanka's idea to hire Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn. (Ivanka was adamant, saying Flynn gets "anything he wants.")
If Trump hadn't hired Manafort and Flynn, the independent counsel investigation would have been over in about a week.
Even Trump's opponents warned him about the man Javanka said should have anything he wants. Ward reports:
"President Barack Obama gave Trump two pieces of advice: One was that the biggest problem he would face as president was the nuclear threat posed by North Korea. The second was a warning against hiring Flynn: 'He'll cause you nothing but problems.'"
Trump's supposedly loyal kids give him worse advice than the ex-president whom Trump tormented during his presidency.
Even Trump's plethora of Goldman Sachs aides were horrified by Jared's decision to fire the FBI director just as congressional Democrats were gearing up their Russian collusion nonsense.
When Goldman Sachs alum Dina Powell got wind of Comey's coming dismissal, she told Jared that firing the director would be "a huge political mistake." A self-assured Jared brushed her off, saying, "No, no, this is what should be done. The guy is not on our team."
At least Jared's string of disastrous decisions hasn't harmed his self-confidence. The hits keep coming!
Jared wanted Chris Christie fired. He was fired. (Jared insists this had absolutely nothing to do with Christie being the U.S. attorney who put Jared's criminal father in prison.) All of Christie's proposed hires were jettisoned along with him. Whoever they were, they couldn't be worse than Trump's actual White House staff.
Jared brought in Goldman Sachs' Gary Cohn to be Trump's National Economic Council director -- which would be like Malia Obama demanding that Obama hire me as his White House economic adviser.
Still, I've got mixed feelings on Cohn. On one hand, he is credited with blocking Trump's promise to end the carried interest loophole (and many other items on the MAGA agenda).
But on the other, Cohn is all over Ward's book, trashing both Jared and Ivanka, e.g.:
-- "Cohn felt Jared was not looking at the practical challenges," Ward writes. He "was more impressed by famous names."
-- Cohn also sneered that Ivanka "thinks she's going to be president of the United States." To her, "this is like the Kennedys, the Bushes, and now the Trumps."
Trump should have read Jared the snake poem before he hired Cohn. ("You knew damn well I was a snake before you took me in.")
Early in the administration, Jared demanded that Trump endorse the widely unpopular establishment Republican, Luther Strange, in the 2017 special Senate race in Alabama to replace Jeff Sessions.
Like night follows day, Trump suffered a humiliating defeat. It turned out Alabamians preferred anyone to Strange. First they voted for a nut in the primary, and then for a Democrat in the general.
Always trust Jared.
No one but Jared could have turned over Sessions' U.S. Senate seat in the reddest state in the Union to a Democrat. Oddsmakers would have said it was impossible.
But with Jared's sound counsel, Trump did it. He took Sessions out of the Senate, then delivered the seat to a Democrat. Trump is like a guy who breaks up a marriage -- and then dumps the wife.
Jared and Ivanka were also the brain trust behind hiring Anthony Scaramucci.
"Ivanka brought Scaramucci into the White House without telling anyone," Ward says. She went to her father and said, "He'd be a great communications director."
Scaramucci was the White House communications director for a glorious 11 days, before imploding in an obscenity-laced rant to The New Yorker.
In addition to Javanka's personnel decisions on Corey Lewandowski, Paul Manafort, Chris Christie, Michael Flynn, Luther Strange, Gary Cohn and Anthony Scaramucci, Javanka wanted John Kelly made chief of staff, believing he would be loyal to them. When that turned out not to be the case, they decided to get rid of Kelly. He was gone.
They wanted Steve Bannon fired. He was fired.
At this rate, it's only a matter of time before Jared gets rid of Trump. No wonder the media like him so much.