Jared Kushner Defends Father-in-Law Donald Trump Against Anti-Semitism Claims
"If my father in law’s fast-moving team was careless in choosing an image to retweet, well part of the reason it’s so shocking is that it’s the actual candidate communicating with the American public rather than the armies of handlers who poll-test ordinary candidates’ every move," the Observer publisher writes in an open letter.
Jared Kushner spoke up for his father-in-law, Donald Trump, on Wednesday, saying the presumptive GOP presidential nominee is not anti-Semitic.
Kushner, a Jewish man who married the billionaire businessman's oldest daughter, Ivanka, in 2009, responded to an open letter criticizing himself and Trump, written Tuesday by one of his own paper's employees, published in The Observer.
"In my opinion, accusations like 'racist' and 'anti-Semite' are being thrown around with a carelessness that risks rendering these words meaningless," Kushner wrote in his piece titled "The Donald Trump I Know," also published on The Observer's website. “My father-in-law is not an anti-Semite. It’s that simple, really.”
Culture writer Dana Schwartz wrote "An Open Letter to Jared Kushner, From One of Your Jewish Employees" on the heels of a tweet shared, then deleted, by Trump which attacked Hillary Clinton and appeared to show a Star of David in a meme. Trump claims the image was a law enforcement star.
In his response, Kushner did not say the image was a law enforcement star.
"If my father in law’s fast-moving team was careless in choosing an image to retweet, well part of the reason it’s so shocking is that it’s the actual candidate communicating with the American public rather than the armies of handlers who poll-test ordinary candidates’ every move," Kushner wrote.
Schwartz pressed her boss on the matter in her open letter.
"I’m asking you, not as a 'gotcha' journalist or as a liberal but as a human being: how do you allow this?" Schwartz wrote. "Because, Mr. Kushner, you are allowing this. Your father-in-law’s repeated accidental winks to the white supremacist community is perhaps a savvy political strategy if the neo-Nazis are considered a sizable voting block — I confess, I haven’t done my research on that front."
Kushner said he respects Schwartz's opinion, but he disagrees with her assessment.
“The fact is that my father in law is an incredibly loving and tolerant person who has embraced my family and our Judaism since I began dating my wife,” he wrote. “His support has been unwavering and from the heart. I have personally seen him embrace people of all racial and religious backgrounds, at his companies and in his personal life.”
Read Kushner's letter in full here.