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Kushner Company Lobbied Against Obamacare Repeal

While not considered unethical, it's just one more instance of the tangled business interests of the Trump administration.
Kushner Company Lobbied Against Obamacare Repeal
Jan. 22, 2017. Image from: @joshuakushner

Talking Points Memo reports today that Jared Kushner owned a stake in Oscar Health Insurance, Joshua Kushner’s company, when it hired lobbyists to fight the ACA repeal.

Jared Kushner divested from the company earlier this year.

We already knew about Joshua Kushner’s heavy involvement in the company. But Jared's partial ownership, through a stake in Thrive Capital, Joshua’s investment firm, was not so obvious.

Jared Kushner listed his holdings in Thrive on his personal financial disclosure form. TMP reported:

But that company’s ownership, through a company called Mulberry Health, Inc., was highlighted by the White House’s own attorneys as a reason he needed to divest in Thrive around the time President Trump was sworn into the White House.

“One major holding of multiple Thrive Capital funds is Oscar Health Insurance. Mr. Kushner’s continuing interest in Oscar could require his recusal from a variety of particular matters that will have a direct and predictable effect on the health insurance industry,” White House Deputy Counsel Stefan Passantino wrote to the Office of Government Ethics in a letter explaining what Kushner would sell to avoid potential conflicts of interest and why. That letter is dated Jan. 25, 2017, less than a week after Trump’s inauguration.

Oscar's success was heavily dependent on the ACA healthcare exchanges. Jared Kushner has been widely reported as telling Trump repeal was a bad idea.

TPM reports the Office of Government Ethic’s guidance on the matter says that broad topics like health care reform legislation don’t qualify because “it is not focused on the interests of specific persons, or a discrete and identifiable class of persons.”

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