The letter from Rep. Jamie Raskin (Md.), the leading Democrat on the House Oversight and Accountability Committee, cited a Washington Post story published online Saturday and other reports he said raised troubling questions about Kushner’s relationship with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman .
Mohammed is chairman of a sovereign wealth fund that invested in Kushner’s private equity fund, known as Affinity Partners, shortly after Kushner left a White House position that regularly dealt with Saudi affairs.
“I am deeply disturbed by your continued refusal to provide documents related to the Saudi government’s $2 billion investment in your fund in light of recent high-profile reports that Saudi Arabia made that investment in Affinity just months after you left a senior position in the White House that you were responsible for. for shaping Middle East policy,” Raskin wrote to Kushner.
Raskin’s letter also requested that Kushner identify all foreign investors in his company.
Kushner did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Raskin’s letter followed a request in June from the committee, then controlled by Democrats, for the documents.
While Kushner’s company turned nearly 2,000 pages in response, Raskin revealed in Tuesday’s letter that it was mostly publicly available documents that are “not materially related to the Saudi government’s investment in the company.” Raskin wrote that when the commission followed up on the matter in October, the company’s legal officer did not respond.
With Republicans now in charge of the House, Raskin this week asked the committee chair, Rep. James Comer (Ky.), To co-sign the letter. Comer, who was asked Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” if he would push for an investigation into Kushner just as he is looking into the actions of President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, had replied that “everything is on the table.”
But Comer said in a statement to The Post on Tuesday that he would not co-sign Raskin’s letter, a decision that could make it more difficult for House Democrats to obtain Kushner’s information.
“Ranking member Raskin and Committee Democrats have a long way to go to prove they are interested in real oversight, having given the Biden administration free pass for the past two years,” Comer said. “If Democrats wish to join the Committee Republicans in our ongoing efforts, including investigating Joe Biden’s involvement in his family’s suspicious business schemes with foreign adversaries, then we can discuss cooperating on future requests . Until then, the Committee’s Republicans will continue to seek answers for the American people about the activities of the current administration.”
Raskin’s request is expected to be picked up by a simultaneous investigation by the Senate Finance Committee and its chairman, Senator Ron Wyden (R-Ore.). “The financial ties between the Saudi royal family and the Trump family raise very serious issues, and when you take into account Jared Kushner’s financial interests, you are looking right into the cradle of financial entanglements,” Wyden told The Hague last week. Post.
Raskin said in an interview Tuesday that while he still hoped Comer would cooperate, “we will certainly work with our partners in the Senate to get all the information we need to conduct a thorough and detailed investigation of all conflicts of interest.” . what we need to learn about.”
Raskin said he “would not allow this to become some kind of one-sided partisan witch hunt. Let’s conduct a serious investigation into the government policy and the deep ethical concerns that have been raised.”
As a senior adviser to President Donald Trump, Kushner worked closely with Mohammed, who became crown prince in part by leveraging his ties to the Trump administration, which provided arms sales and other benefits. Trump also provided crucial support by refusing to endorse a CIA finding that Muhammad had ordered the killing or imprisonment of Jamal Khashoggi, a Post columnist who had been critical of the crown prince’s policies. Trump has said he “saved” Muhammad, and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo wrote in his recent memoir that Trump told him to visit the Crown Prince and “tell him he owes us.”
The Saudi Public Investment Fund has also funded LIV Golf, which holds tournaments at Trump’s golf courses. It’s unclear how much Trump earns from that arrangement. A Trump spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In his letter to Kushner, Raskin wrote: “Your efforts to protect the Crown Prince may have enabled him to maintain his position at the top of the Saudi government and thus his ability to provide significant financial benefits to you and your father-in-law. law after the end of the Trump administration.”
Raskin noted that when the committee contacted Kushner’s company in June, she responded that she had “nothing to hide” and was “committed to working with the committee to provide the appropriate details, documents and information to help you support research”.
Although Affinity did eventually provide some documents, Raskin wrote, “it has been unable to produce any statement regarding the reasons behind your company’s receipt of $2 billion from the Saudi sovereign wealth fund.”
The congressman asked for the documents to be provided by March 1.