May 4, 2020

The watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington is super busy in the Trump Era. And the coronavirus pandemic hasn't slowed them down, given that Jared Kushner is holding forth with a "task force" made up of what appears to be...Wall Street buddies of his? With non-government phones and private email accounts? Inside the White House?

Must be Monday. CREW:

Members of Jared Kushner’s shadow coronavirus task force appear to have violated federal conflicts of interest and transparency laws, according to a letter sent by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) today to the Office of Government Ethics (OGE). The task force appears to be operating with little to no oversight or transparency, leaving the public in the dark about its actions. Its members, drawn from private industries with ties to the administration, have taken over critical government functions and wield power over vast sums of money.

While the Trump administration’s official coronavirus response efforts are being spearheaded by Vice President Pence, the president tasked Kushner with assembling a team that consists largely of representatives from private industries, including a former college roommate of Kushner’s. Despite little information publicly being known about the team Kushner has assembled, many members of Kushner’s shadow task force are private sector individuals with massive financial interests that likely pose serious conflicts of interest and have yet to be fully disclosed to the public.

“Jared Kushner’s task force appears to be playing a critical role in our government’s response to a catastrophic pandemic with literally life or death consequences, and yet Americans have no way to know whether task force members are acting in our interest or their own,” said CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder. “We need task force members to be disclosing their interests and avoiding conflicts of interest, rather than acting in secret with no oversight.”

Read the rest. And follow CREW on Twitter, they're tweeting daily on the corruption of this so-called administration.

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