Jared Kushner reportedly urged Trump to challenge appointment of special counsel to head Russia probe


(JTA) — Jared Kushner encouraged President Donald Trump to contest the Justice Department’s appointment of a new overseer of its investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election, according to a report.

On Wednesday afternoon, after being informed that acting attorney general Rod Rosenstein had appointed former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel, Trump gathered his staff, including his Jewish son-in-law, Jared Kushner, The New York Times reported.

While most staff members urged Trump to accept the appointment, Kushner, who serves as a senior adviser to the president, “was one of the few dissenting voices, urging the president to counterattack,” The New York Times reported, citing two senior administration officials.

In the end, however, Kushner lost and Trump released a statement that emphasized that there “was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity” but did not attack the investigation.

Only the next morning did Trump tweet, “This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”

Last week, Trump drew criticism for firing FBI Director James Comey, who was leading a probe into allegations that the Trump campaign and transition team had inappropriate contacts with Russia. Trump aides cited the director’s missteps in an investigation into Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified emails as the reason for Comey’s dismissal.