Donald Trump seems to be turning against his own White House advisers so quickly, blaming and scapegoating them left and right for his endless series of blunders and bad decisions, it’s left some to wonder if before long his “senior staff” might only consist of members of his own family. But according to White House insiders, Trump is now flailing so badly that he’s even turned against his own son-in-law Jared Kushner.
This notable development comes from a New York Times piece which quotes insiders as having heard Donald Trump refer to most of his own top advisers as “incompetent” – and he’s also now applying that label to Kushner (link). This represents an about face from Trump, after months of widespread reporting that he’d been handing his son-in-law more and more power over the Executive Branch, at the expense of other top advisers such as Steve Bannon.
Perhaps the most stunning revelation from the NYT Times piece is that Trump has admitted to advisers that “he knew he needed to make big changes but did not know which direction to go in, or whom to select.” The stunning part isn’t merely that Trump has no idea who to hire next; it’s that among the tiny handful of advisers he still trusts, one of them just betrayed him by leaking this embarrassing tidbit to the New York Times.
This may help explain why at this point Trump keeps sending out his National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster to try to mop up the mess he made by giving Israel’s most sensitive classified information to the Russians. It’s never been clear that he’s had any affinity or trust in McMaster, who was only hired after Russian asset Michael Flynn had to be ousted. But it sounds like Trump is on the verge of getting rid of everyone else involved. It raises the question of how many of them might quit before they can be fired. Then again, if you’re Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, how do you quit the family?
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report