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President Trump may be legally exempt from federal ethics laws, allowing him to retain his real estate holdings, but his son-in-law Jared Kushner, as an executive staff member of the administration, does not have the same privileges. That has led to some heightened scrutiny, as The Washington Post has learned Kushner is keeping "nearly 90 percent of his vast real estate holdings even after resigning from the family business and pledging a clear divide between his private interests and public duties."
As is usual for White House officials, Kushner refused to go over the terms of his ethics agreement, which details what topics he will stay out of in order to avoid conflicts of interest. Yet "many of the real estate properties that Kushner still owns rely on the support of financial institutions, investors, and local officials — and often fall under the purview of regulatory agencies — over which he might now enjoy considerable influence," The Washington Post writes.
"Right now, the only thing that the public has is the assurances from the White House that everybody is complying with ethics rules," said former Office of Government Ethics general counsel Don Fox.
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After divesting in certain projects, including One Journal Square, which is tied to the controversial U.S. visa program with China, Kushner still holds real estate interests valued between $132 million and $407 million. Read more about his potential conflicts of interest at The Washington Post.
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