What position did Ivanka and Jared Kushner hold during Donald Trump’s presidency?
The former President’s daughter and son-in-law have been called before the Justice Department investigation into Janaury 6.
Special counsel Jack Smith, who is overseeing the Justice Department’s criminal investigation into former President Trump, has issued subpoenas to two key advisors to the Trump White House.
The former President’s daughter, Ivanka, and her husband Jared Kushner, both served as senior White House advisors during the Trump administration. They previously held key roles in Trump’s successful 2016 presidential election campaign.
Upon the announcement that she would serve as a senior advisor to the President, just two months after her father entered the White House, Ivanka released a statement confirming that she would function as an unpaid federal employee while in the role.
“I have heard the concerns some have with my advising the President in my personal capacity while voluntarily complying with all ethics rules, and I will instead serve as an unpaid employee in the White House Office, subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees,” she wrote.
Their prominent positions within the Trump White House were deemed controversial. Most notably Ivanka sat alongside her father at a 2019 G20 summit in Osaka, appearing in a photo of world leaders.
Ivanka and Jared Kushner to be questioned on January 6
The investigation overseen by Smith focuses on the January 6 attack on the Capitol. Reports have previously suggested that both Ivanka and Kushner were in close contact with former President Trump on the day in question.
The New York Times reports that Ivanka was in the Oval Office while Trump phoned Vice President Mike Pence to persuade him to disrupt the certification of the Electoral College results that would confirm Joe Biden’s victory.
She later went on to accompany her father while he addressed supporters near the White House, from where the pro-Trump mob set off for the Capitol. She was seen in video footage shared by Donald Trump Jr., the former President’s son, watching events unfold alongside her father.
Kushner, who had been in the Middle East on 6 Janaury 2021, returned to the White House on the evening as rioters remained inside the buildings of Congress. He and Ivanka are thought to have been key voices in the effort to convince Trump to publically call for his supporters to leave the Capitol.
Will Trump block the subpoenas against Ivanka and Jared Kushner?
The Justice Department investigation appears to have intensified in recent months, aided by evidence gathered by the House Select Committee investigating January 6. Both Ivanka and Kushner testified before the committee and footage of their interviews were aired publically by the committee.
In one video, Ivanka was asked whether she accepted the findings by Attorney General William Barr, who confirmed that there was no evidence of widespread election fraud. She said that she did, despite her father’s claims to the contrary.
At different stages of the myriad investigations into the former President, Trump-aligned witnesses have sought to fight subpoenas calling on them to testify. Two weeks ago Pence was issued with a subpoena but the former Vice President has made clear his intention to challenge it.
Trump may once again attempt to use executive privilege to excuse his daughter and son-in-law from testifying before the investigation, as has been done with a number of other witnesses. They both appeared before the House Select Committee but, with the former President’s legal troubles building, he may seek to delay and block any further access to members of his most trusted inner circle.