It’s well known in black ops and intelligence circles that people who are under greater than normal financial stress are likely targets for blackmail or for making increasingly unwise decisions in order to attempt to backtrack and fix the original bad decision that got them into the mess they’re in to begin with. Jared Kushner is the poster child of massive debt becoming increasingly more unmanageable as the days go by. Monday, Vornado Realty Trust said that it had reclassified its 49.5 stake in Kushner Co.’s 666 Fifth Avenue building because it did not intend to hold the asset on a long term basis. “We basically believe that the returns and the structure and the time is such that we would rather exit than stick it out. It’s pretty much as simple as that,” a Vornado spokesman said. That was Monday. On Tuesday Politico reported that Kushner’s three credit lines had been increased from $5Million to $25Million and that Ivanka and Jared’s total indebtedness has gone from an estimated $98Million to $155Million. Bear in mind, all the while Jared was busy stacking up debt, he also was busy talking a lot to Russia. Things are worse than you think. Chicago Tribune:
Kushner met with Sergey Kisylak, the Russian ambassador, to discuss a secret back channel and with the head of a sanctioned Russian bank, VneshEconomBank (VEB). (“The conversation is curious not only because it represents a top Trump official secretly meeting with an arm of the Russian government, but also because accounts of the meeting differ in important ways,” The Atlantic’s David Graham noted at the time. “Kushner says he attended the meeting in his capacity as an adviser to President-elect Trump. But VEB says that the meeting concerned Kushner’s family real-estate business.”) And he was present at the now-infamous June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower attended by a Kremlin-connected lawyer.
Kushner’s financial problems make these contacts all the more troubling. As he was racking up debt, Fordham Law School professor Jed Shugerman tells me, Kushner “also just coincidentally was setting up secret lines to the Kremlin and was meeting with (Russian President Vladmir) Putin’s banker a month after the election. And he just coincidentally was meeting with Russians offering dirt in Trump Tower during the election.” He explains, “Kushner’s massive debts are an important piece of the entire Russia conspiracy on some of the parties’ motives (Kushner, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and Trump) for such inexplicable behavior and such risk-taking.”
In addition to the Russia investigation, prosecutors in Brooklyn have subpoenaed records from Deutsche Bank, which has lent “hundreds of millions to the Kushner family real estate business.” (As The New York Times noted, “there is no indication that the subpoena is related to the investigation being conducted by Robert S. Mueller III.”) The Washington Post has reported that a month before Election Day 2016, “Kushner’s real estate company finalized a $285 million loan as part of a refinancing package for its property near Times Square in Manhattan. The loan came at a critical moment. Kushner was playing a key role in the presidential campaign of his father-in-law, Donald Trump. The lender, Deutsche Bank, was negotiating to settle a federal mortgage fraud case and charges from New York state regulators that it aided a possible Russian money-laundering scheme. The cases were settled in December and January.”
If this wasn’t enough, just today Bloomberg reports that the IRS has requested documents “from lenders and investors in real estate projects managed by Jared Kushner’s family.” At this time, it’s unclear whether the IRS is looking at Kushner business associates only or at the company itself. Meanwhile, the inquiry into Kushner Co’s use of the E-5 program for foreign investors also continues. The dots are all starting to connect. Any way you look at it, the big dots are labelled “Great Sums Of Money,” “Russians” and “Donald Trump.” Harvard Constitutional Law professor Laurence Tribe summed it up:
“The more money Kushner owes, especially to lenders or guarantors who do not have America’s best interests at heart, the more he and his father-in-law the president are subject to compromising pressures at best and outright blackmail at worst. The fact that Kushner, without full security clearance, is permitted to peruse the president’s daily briefing, containing the most secret information that exists, makes all of Kushner’s financial obligations and debts urgent threats to our national security. This situation is unconscionable.”
This cannot be allowed to continue. Kushner needs to go.