An inauspicious debut

Arwa Mahdawi on the Kushner threat:

On Thursday, Kushner, who has taken on vast responsibilities in the Trump administration’s response to Covid-19, made his first public appearance at the White House daily coronavirus briefing. His moment in the spotlight seemed to serve as a wakeup call for the US. All of a sudden, it was glaringly obvious how dangerous Kushner’s hubris is…

…Kushner was supposedly at the press briefing to explain the work he has been doing. However, despite him repeating the word ‘“data” 13 times, it quickly became clear that he has no idea what he is doing. He doesn’t even seem to know what the purpose of a federal stockpile of medical equipment is. “It’s supposed to be our stockpile,” he explained haughtily to reporters. “It’s not supposed to be states’ stockpiles that they then use.”

During his 39 years on Earth, Kushner has continuously failed upwards. Despite being an unremarkable student, he got a place at Harvard; according to spokespeople for Kushner Companies, this was unrelated to his dad giving $2.5m to the university. After buying a skyscraper at the very top of the real estate market, Kushner was miraculously bailed out by a company with links to the government of Qatar – just months before a potentially ruinous $1.4bn mortgage was due. Wherever Kushner is, questionable deals, questionable ethics and a crowd of yes men seem to follow. The world is constantly remade to reflect the reality that he wants to see. Indeed, shortly after the backlash to Kushner’s comments about the federal stockpile, the government’s website appeared to change to more closely reflect Kushner’s assertions.

And the stakes have risen.

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