DiscoverVox's The WeedsJared Kushner: International man of mystery

Jared Kushner: International man of mystery

Update: 2017-06-021


Dylan Matthews and politics reporter Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the Paris Accords and the mysterious role of the First Son-in-Law.

Following script is auto-generated by Speech to Text Technology:

yes I had an everything bagel with sausage egg and cheese it's decadent the lessons that see and inspect a new folder with a Kashi bar for a line the hello welcome to another episode of weeds in the Vox Media podcast Network I met Yglesias adds on me today with that Dylan Matthews who has been on the show before but we are banning the command universal basic income at nobody will be given money for any reason under any of the topics we talk about it but thanks for being here I suck I get into pro cop covers that the White House and political matters here is the fact that Tom got to be on thanks for having me yes it's been great the big news this week in terms of substance is Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement this was announced yesterday as we're recording by the time he announced it I think it had come to be expected there were sort of fat enough leaks see he built a little drama I'd just said like I'm going to do an announcement on my decision but it was pretty clear that that meant he was pulling out relative to where we were a few months ago or even a few weeks ago I do think it's something of a surprise there had been considerable support from his administration for the idea of staying in a lot of the business community wanted to stay in and be part of the reason is that the women itself did not include a lot of binding action on the United States Obama put this thing together diplomatically relatively late in his administration when he could not credibly promise dramatic new policy initiatives and so he didn't and it just sort of said the US which would continue on its same kind of course but from a diplomatic standpoint of the women can now unravel other countries might retaliate that there seems to be a lot of foreign leaders dunking on Twitter which is a strange new phenomenon but Andrew had at an interesting piece on the site and your making the case of this is basically an example of Donald Trump being just a pretty standard issue Republican I would say maybe not a standard issue Republican but definitely a sort of where the conservative base is and where I'm a pretty significant portion of the conservative institutional actors in the Republican Party are whether that's Think tanks whether that's at elected officials whether that's big donors activist groups I think that some of the coverage of this has sort of perch rated as an idiosyncratic weird decision by Donald Trump or perhaps tube and who is pushing this kind of anti globalist agenda but I think what we have to keep in mind here is that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and twenty one other Republican senators sent a letter calling on him to do this most major conservative activists groups did the same whether it's an Americans for prosperity which is the Koch Brothers Group or the Heritage Foundation and they were all behind this end and then you can see it in the conservative media outlets to and not just the people who are usually in some corner like Fox News and bright fire but even National Review which is has had that usually from Yeah Yeah take the anti Trump stance and actually said David French who was considering actually running for president against Trump as an independent he wrote an article praising trumps pulling out of Paris a slight the right thing for the Constitution so I do think it's important to keep in mind here that there is a spectrum of opinion in the Republican Party on whether they should outwardly say they don't believe in climate science global warming either isn't happening or humans aren't contributing to its or whether they should sort of acknowledge the science by contrived reasons to oppose proposals to do very much about it I do wonder about this is how much of conservative support for this move is driven by the fact that it's the move from decided to May versus the other way around that you know if Trump had done a different course and said You know look we're doing whatever we DK in changing whatever in the domestic funding but as a foreign policy matter we are staying inside this global climate frame where you know as Bob Corker said we should as Mitt Romney said we should we David French have been denouncing from because I feel like they never Trump or intellectuals alike in this weird place where you can go like Bill Kristol and David frum have totally marginalize themselves or else you need to every once in awhile write this like I criticize Trump when he's wrong but you know he's he's doing the right thing here kind of takes away I'm not an expert in The collected Works of David French my guess would view that you're criticized him for not going far enough on that one of the relevant things like what with Republican base voters do in response to this mall with sort of media institutions like like Fox News do and I think you have a lot of compelling evidence boats are from political science in from just experience with Russia in the last election the people take their cues from from senior elites among the president's most senior and aspects like if you had polled Paris among GOP voters before a decision was made and then Trump decided to stay in for whatever reason you would have seen a shift the same way you just saw was for Holcomb added for Russia after Easter it's cozy up to prune the Americans for prosperity point though it is a good one right I mean you ease to be involved in the a coke web documentation side of the journalistic world and I don't honestly know that much about it and definitely like a thing that the Koch brothers have been doing for years is trying to stake out not merely echo of the positions of mainstream Republican Party leaders the way some kinds of think tanks and advocacy organizations do but say the positions that are similar to but at least a little bit different from where the GOP is and try like Bend Republican politics toward them and moving to completely de legitimize that climate change issue in Republican Party circles is something they've been that long predates Donald Trump yeah of course and down I think you can see that in McConnell also calling on trends apply to this agreement represents Kentucky coal interests in Kentucky at fossil fuel interests generally are just one of the most important interest groups and funders of today's Republican Party and they have been for a couple decades yes that's the coax to I mean I think they like to self present as pure ideological money rather than transactional interest group money out but they have substantial interests specifically in the fossil fuel sector get in over their money comes from but I think what I would point out is that while it's true that the issue of Paris in particular I could envision present marker Rubio or Jeb Bush may be saying well you know I was against this wagon was negotiated by it's not really finding it doesn't do all that much and we can say to process more from the inside so it would be too much of that headache to kind of pull out now and so the question of whether any other Republican president would have withdrawn from Paris I think is an open one but the question of what general policies any other Republican president would pursue in the week yay when it comes to environmental regulation or deregulation whether they would make addressing climate change the major priorities for the administration I think it's pretty clear that it's very very low down the party's priority list I mean they might have stayed in the Paris agreement but they wouldn't have cared very much about trying to invest anything in actually trying to make good on this and I mean this is a big change that I think as people know has happened but to some extent tent of like forget about it at times opportunistic I we look back and read the two thousand and eight Democratic Party platform a few times recently and it's striking how it makes some noises about climate change but the main thematic energy policy point of the two thousand eight Democrats is the idea of Energy Independence and the problematic nature of foreign oil like that's like the mean framing and so doesn't make any sense anymore will make a lot of logical sense at the time because people if you in the know right you understood in two thousand and eight that the Democrats where the environmentalist party but they had adopted this framework that reducing clean energy and stuff was about reducing dependence on foreign oil there were some gestures toward the idea of clean coal which is produced domestically and didn't say anything about fracking or horizontal drilling because those were not technologies people are familiar with the time and the like ongoing course of partisan polarization plus the development of much more domestic oil and gas drilling has cut that out right where Democrats are now much more squarely positioned as an Indy fossil fuel development Party and Republicans at Ridgeview Bush came from Texas it was an oil state he had a very fossil fuel friendly politics but then his successors Republican nominee John McCain who had a different view on this kind of issues and it just was in it was clearly not like at the core of what Republicans were about since they could just switch from nominee to nominee and now they are much more firmly cemented as the party that stands for the idea that digging up coal fracking for natural gas offshore drilling for oil is like the economic development strategy for the United States and Democrats I think we'll play realizing the full implications of this wench have like put themselves in a I want to call in an extreme policy because I agree with it and you don't one of his extreme relative to where they used to be It is a much more extreme take the Democrats now is like less responsive to that part of what was happening she doesn't need is that there's a whole sort of green jobs message that people are putting out there with the idea was that you could frame this in a way so as non threatening to Appalachian and other sects of the country they're dependent on fossil fuel for economic development and results or focus grouped in with his heavy cognizant of what they're going to be attacked on whereas now like if you like the actual environmental grassroots is much more powerful and much more vocal and important as a part of the Democratic coalition which makes that kind of navigating more difficult bestselling we shouldn't build this pipeline because pipelines are bad is like a thing of any vocal constituency in the Democratic Party wants people to say and I think it's crazy to say thank you message me like a ton of nuance yeah and I think um I was looking at some polling on partisanship and climate change recently and a lot of people have observe how a basic opinion on climate science has become increasingly polarized among Democrat and Republican voters over the past few years but one thing I saw it was really interesting is that I think this was the Pew poll last December and twenty three percent of Republican voters said that the Earth was warming and that humans were the main distributor and of course that's interesting but if you look at Democratic voters only two thirds of them agree with that so even in this sort of acknowledgement in the consensus of climate science is nowhere near position among self identified Democratic voters still have a third of the base too I mean it's not just that they don't really care about this it's that they aren't necessarily even convinced by the science which I felt was a little troubling for people who care about climate change yeah I mean aliens in important question I think I saw a lot of trumpeting of you know some some polls indicating public support for climate action yesterday coming from Democrats and maybe that's true it's like a true finding that is there I think he was soo juicy it's difficult for me need to point to an instance of an election there was a general election or primary election really where you would say OK this person lost because their opinion on climate change was was too right wing I think it's fairly easy to point to examples of coal country Democrats who have been hampered by this kind of thing and there's a question in my mind as to how much that sort of green politics political cost has has bled out of the sort of West Virginia A southwestern real Virginia eastern Ohio Kentucky area into the like Michigan Pennsylvania uh you know sort of blue walls that the tram reach where is you could imagine politics in which Democrats are compensating because they are winning elections in Arizona and a strong pro solar message is a fucking ton of sunshine in Arizona very few coal mines and it actually horribly retrograde public utility there but it hasn't yet happened to an extent you know polls are great people to over them politicians care about polls but also when issues have been kicked around for a long time it's like you need concrete events kind of like put the fear of God in people and I've never seen that I've never seen like what is the This is the thing that is going to make a Republican worried re reading fracking specifically his team stuff a lot that served the two major shale sites are in North Dakota which is a state that as recently as is twenty ten had two Democratic senators for a long period of time unlike real Democratic senators who were were not super right wing and Mike now has one you just got elected but this can forgive and to Pennsylvania in Ohio span the other one in so you can serve an actual large increase in dependence on fossil fuels in certain very electrolytes significant states for controlled Senate and the latter case for the electoral college and you seem zero response to this among among Democrats resent it they like I think we should be chewing like extremely aggressive things to fight climate change by what declared This is like a political analysis and not like a normative one but you need to make that argument needed to accommodate yourself to that reality today to a certain extent we all know has been warm or just sort of age polarization of voting in the United States and you see climate change very much like falling into that span I mean where you have to have Republicans building their call ish an increasingly on like an issue portfolio that appeals very exclusively tell people and makes you wonder where the long run trajectory of this is is supposed to be because you know one reason that I think we have seen in Paul's public concern about climate change is mounting is that the warming itself continues to mount at the other news yesterday along with Paris was like opening up is a giant fissure in the Antarctic ice sheet I'm not an Antarctic ice sheet scientists don't know exactly what the deal is but at some point some giant piece of ice is gone from Antarctica and flooding up north and reality doesn't intervene in politics at least on some level I am fascinated as a subplot in this whole saga by the legend of Jared Kushner from which I think is unlike most firmly established by the book ended by a pair of any Carney articles and Politico she had one in December that was headlined defunct wrong climate czar question mark and there was one yesterday about how like Jared an avant garde moving on after Paris defeat was this whole sort of like longer narrative of Tums daughter who he seems to be quite close to and his son in law who he was not close to historically but has become very important part of his circle and that they were kind of these like I don't know culturally liberal New Yorkers who were spearheading the influence of moderation in the Trump administration and as recently as April nd around wrote about this but that was it was this like Rise of the globalist that was supposed to be taking place inside the White House which I think is part of what set up this idea that Paris was a Steve and triumph because relatively recently we were hearing was that Jared in a funk and Gary Cohn H R McMaster and Rex Taylor Sen had like establish dominance and that you know whether we were conservative on economics they were going to pursue like a moderate course on foreign policy and trade issues yeah there was that moment I think it was a month month and has to go something like that where Trump publicly rebuked band and it really seemed to be signaling that he was on the outs but he does seem to have hanged in there and one out on this issue but it's also sometimes hard to know what's really going on behind the scenes there I think the reporting has been very clear that Yvonne has been pushing against this it's not clear how active she's been but people can point to things that she tried to do at least I think what Kushner day it is a little less clear there was another report in the post I think and that said that he actually shared some of Trump's concerns about Paris and that's after that decision is made maybe just doesn't wanna be portrayed as losing out but I do think that on many issues the narrative of Jared in particular as being the moderate influence is not actually true you can see that in the firing of Co MI where he is said to be the top advisor who was pushing most heavily for Trump to fire cause I to zoom to Jerry's he'll turn I think I understand like it because he wasn't just a funk that or even Yvonne can vary greatly was it was this whole story about the globalist so yes they do think is directly relevant to use a distinguishing between like domestic environmental regulation unlike the Paris accord as a diplomatic mission right unlike the globalist view point I think is fair it was while these big multinational companies like retribution and that in their executives in the administration look very common and rock stars way like there was a desire on the part of America's diplomats America's big businesses to stay at the table well I don't know the way I think this is one of those issues where if you look at the issue of trade trade is an issue where the institutional actors in the Republican Party are aligned with the so called global position environmental policy is just not one of those issues yes you can portray Paris as say we can say that oh this is really about diplomacy it's not about climate change but I mean a lot of that conservative activist groups interpreted this about climate change a lot of e elected officials the think tank people I mean it's not really clear just how much in love corporate America was with Paris you can think back to when Obama was pushing cap and trade in two thousand and nine and its like so they got of the companies to sign on and say that cap and trade was a good idea and sir they preferred to be at a table there were crying when the cap and trade bill failed no not at all where I might pray and on the latest edition of the limited upside NBA podcast it's the Warriors it's the Cavs it's the third edition the NBA Finals and what better way to preview on court stuff the rivalry and some of the trash talking with the editors from our SB nation's Cavaliers and Warriors sides with a little bit of an interesting relationship so this one gets kind of fun subscribe on the listen tab on iTunes or go to SB Nation dot com to check the episode out well knows that like having to to this point about the intersection here with mainstream conservatism the way that climate skepticism has been sold by conservative elites not just in the lasts for five years been lost like twenty or thirty years cousins are imbued with an anti globalist vet and I don't know if you remember the whole agenda twenty one thing where there was a sort of United Nations initiative to promote sustainable development that got picked up by tickling back and the sword for conservative media ecosystem and turned into the sort of conspiracy theory about global domination and the UN stopping on property rights those words like arch populist and of the kind of arguments that you heard like Paul Ryan and people like that making the Spurs like Kyoto that that a lot of the reaction to Kyoto was standard issue climate skepticism but some of it was the sense that this was this this international body imposing rules on us they were unfair that that didn't ask as much of other countries of equivalent size and emissions as the rest of us I think that's true read that part of the nature of climate change issue wait is that everybody agree is that sort of ultimate solution to the missions require some measure of global governance and that is something that has been not welcome in the grass whats right for long before anyone would care about climate change and the worker a man like a stronger United Nations that is going to have enforceable rules is not something that bothers conservatives are interested and when you add in interest group politics economic issues so for this recipe for a much more forceful I kind of push back and it is also where you see a different perspective from like Goldman Sachs executive who I don't want to say Gary Cohn is a secret liberal the nature of wanting a multinational business is that you are relatively comfortable with the idea that having the same regulatory framework in multiple different countries is actually preferable for your business and have a million different ones right so like bank executives have a lot of feelings about how they don't like strong bank regulations they don't mind the idea of hammering out bank regulations at a big meeting in Switzerland one thing you tend to get a least common denominator regulatory approach when you insist on going global so that's a real difference between a like conservative leaning business executive and like a Rush Limbaugh listening conservative living somewhere in America is what saying that the light secret liberal Jared Kushner narrative has a foundation in some reality I would say I mean severed from reporting of his actions in the administration before Donald ran for president he had this whole life as a Democratic Party donor in New York and New Jersey which is preceded by his father's life as a Democratic Party donor in Newark New Jersey where the U S attorney from New Jersey Chris Christie as part of his it struck me as a somewhat partisan prosecution of a major New Jersey Democratic Party donor by Christie that wound up getting Kushner County Jail and it's just that yes cuz is that Charles cuz it was a real estate developer who was a big Democratic donor dispose of strings that Christie got him on attacks saying that then became a very salacious witness tampering thing that involved hiring useless what it will be doing that he hired a hooker or brother in law was cooperating with investigators and giving them some sort of incriminating information about Charles Kushner so he sink paid a prostitute to seduce the brother in law had it videotaped and sent the tape to the brother in law's wife said producers is a great stay I know you met her before the Trump campaign and Donald Trump is like this guy he's on Twitter his birth or I hear on TV and he likes to talk about how maybe run for president some day and a funny fact about him is that his daughter Yvonne that like in New York society woman is married to Jared Kushner are a rich Jewish die Democratic Party donor dads Democratic Party donor you would characterize either of them as like huge liberals this is a fairly typical social time right new York City area a business person who probably is liberal on a lot of social and cultural issues was a pragmatic need to be on friendly terms with New York area elected officials who are Democrats and probably behind the scenes is like a man can be like not raise taxes that much one should also own the New York observer which is not the high ceilings publication if you live outside the work and especially like in the mid two thousand s was like a notable somewhat left of center Regional All newspaper isn't your prototypical like moderate Democrat like social time away which is like practically the opposite social type of the like let's go to Trump country and you know investigate wet like embittered coal miners think about big city elites that is the gut level foundation on which I think this whole garden of that narrative is built is that even if you don't know Jared Kushner and Ivana Trump people who like live in DC and New York and write about politics know that kind of person and that kind of person is like not a Donald Trump in the easiest not a leg break Bar Reader and it's very hard even though all the evidence suggests otherwise it's like hard for people to conceptualize the idea that like Jared Kushner is like an all in trouble with her because of their social networks also that like these they know that person because they are the same parties this time around there just are some issues were it is more okay to deviate and others like you can go to some of those parties and be like Yeah I think taxes are low to high and people are like whatever you can say that you don't think gay people should have a core rights or that you don't like believe the science around climate change and so there are real social pressures for the kind of use the people in queue team to them which I think is part of I like
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Jared Kushner: International man of mystery