SINCE MOVING INTO the White House months ago, Jared Kushner—senior advisor and son-in-law to the President, savior of the Middle East, and possible person of interest in a federal investigation—has amassed a rather extensive project portfolio. The issues under Kushner’s purview include negotiating peace between Israel and Palestine, fixing the opioid crisis, updating technology across the entire federal government, and spearheading criminal justice reform, to name just a few. It seems like a nearly impossible set of challenges for anyone to tackle, and even more so for Kushner. Because in addition to not having any previous government experience, the former real estate exec has demonstrated repeated difficulty filling out simple, routine forms correctly. This includes his own voter registration form.
According to the records held by the New York State Board of Elections, Jared Corey Kushner is a woman.
Is Kushner a woman? Did he just accidentally fill out the form incorrectly? Is he the victim of a malicious voter impersonation scheme? Unfortunately, there’s absolutely no way to know for sure, because he has yet to provide WIRED with a comment. But based on his recent history with paperwork, option two seems like a pretty safe bet.
This past July, for instance, CBS reported that Jared had updated a disclosure form necessary to obtain security clearance no fewer than three separate times. Kushner originally filed the form on January 18 with zero names listed under a section that asked about foreign contacts. He later claimed his team had accidentally hit send before he had a chance to fully fill it in, though according to The Washington Post, the form also got the dates of his graduate degrees incorrect, and even omitted his father-in-law’s address. He submitted a supplemental form acknowledging that the original form was incomplete the following day.
The second time Kushner attempted to fix his security clearance form, sometime in May, he added over 100 calls and meetings with foreign contacts. But soon after, it came to light that had attended a meeting with Donald Trump Jr. and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who had allegedly offered damaging information about Hillary Clinton. Kushner submitted the security form a third time to include, as he put it, “the person who has since been identified as a Russian attorney,” on June 21.
How, exactly, Kushner managed to bungle the form multiple times has been the subject of much debate, as well as of his own testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee. But regardless of the cause, his apparently chronic inability to correctly fill out boxes is troubling coming from the man who’s supposed to overhaul the entire United States government.
“Kushner can’t even fill out the most basic paperwork without screwing it up, so it’s a mystery why anyone thinks he’s somehow going to bring peace to the Middle East,” says Brad Bainum, a spokesperson for American Bridge, a liberal opposition research hub and the group that first identified Jared’s voter slip-up. “Would anyone but the president’s son-in-law still have a West Wing job after repeated disclosure errors and a botched a security clearance form?”
The mix-up seems especially surprising given the White House’s intense focus on allegedly rampant voter fraud. So far, its evidence seems to rely mostly on dead people not removing their names from voter rolls and simple clerical errors. The bar for inferring nefarious intent isn’t exactly high.
But when it comes to whether Jared’s misstated gender constitutes a voter fraud violation, the chances seem slim. “There has to be an intent to give the false information,” says Loyola Law School professor Justin Levitt. “If he (for some reason) knowingly registered as a woman—for what purpose, I could not guess—that might be described as voter fraud, though it would have negligible effect on the determination of his eligibility, and so wouldn’t amount to much anyway.”
Still, better to be safe than sorry. We reached out to Kris Kobach of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity for comment on Jared’s potentially improper voting status. We’ll update if and when we hear back.
SEPTEMBER 27, 2017