Jared Kushner’s family selling their Chicago building at center of pay-to-play scandal
The family real estate company part-owned by senior White House advisor Jared Kushner is selling the high-rise building in Chicago, the Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday.
Citing people familiar with the deal, the Tribune reports, “Kushner Cos. has agreed to sell the building at 225 W. Randolph St. to a group that includes New York-based Angelo Gordon & Co., former Angelo Gordon executive Ryan Klenovich and Chicago-based AJ Capital Partners.”
The building was at the center of a scandal earlier this year after The New York Times reported the founder of Apollo Global Management, a private equity firm, met repeatedly with Kushner inside the White House.
Apollo founder Joshua Harris had discussed taking a White House job while meeting with Kushner. The job did not materialize, but Apollo lent $184 million to Kushner Cos. following the meetings.
The newspaper could not determine the sale price, but said the high-rise “is believed to be worth far less than the $275.7 million Kushner Cos. paid in December 2007, as real estate values were peaking ahead of the last crash.”
“As a company, we’re very happy with the property and its capitalization,” Kushner Cos. spokeswoman Karen Zabarsky told the Tribune.
Following The New York Times report, MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow reported the scandal would be of particular interest to special counsel Robert Mueller.
“So that loan, $184 million, after these meetings at the White House between the Apollo guy and Jared Kushner…they talk among other things about a potential job at the White House for the Apollo guy,” Maddow noted.
“Now obviously, there’s important context here, in terms of what’s going on with Jared Kushner and concerns about him in the White House,” Maddow reminded. “This is not the first concerning report we’ve had — just in the last few days — about the presidential son-in-law and senior adviser potentially mixing his government responsibilities and private business needs in potentially dubious ways.”
“This is hundreds of millions of dollars being shoved at him and his personal business interests while taking meetings with executives from those lenders in the White House, in his capacity as a White House official,” Maddow said.
“I’ve summarized what I see as the bottom line here, that Mr. Kushner’s business interests not only aren’t over, but business interests in which he is actively invested — where he is getting a personal benefit — have received notable, and in some cases remarkably large, cash infusions from people who have had business dealings with him as a White House official,” Maddow concluded.
CNN’s Anderson Cooper also reported on the scandal following The Times.