Maddow chides Republicans for avoiding Jared Kushner's self-dealing allegations while attacking Hunter Biden
Jared Kushner (left) and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman AFP/File / SAUL LOEB, Ludovic MARIN

The final segment of MSNBC host Rachel Maddow on Monday evening was about the recent report in the New York Times that Jared Kushner and former Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin spent an unusual amount of time in the Persian Gulf over the course of just four years in Trump's office.

Maddow showed photos of the past three secretaries of the U.S. Treasury Department and noted that among the three, which held the positions over Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Collectively, those men went to the Persian Gulf states a total of eight times over ten years. Mnuchin, by contrast, over four years went to the Gulf states at least 18 times, and that doesn't count informal meetings with Gulf state leaders while they were in the U.S.

Both Mnuchin and Kushner, who went to the Middle East fewer than a dozen times, both started investment firms with significant contributions from those same countries. Meanwhile, Kushner made at least three trips to Saudi Arabia during the first year of the Trump administration. One of Kushner’s trips was actually kept secret. Kushner scored $2 billion from the Saudis, even after investors told them it wasn't a good idea.

These trips, among other things, are raising ethics questions about the two gentlemen's self-dealing while working for the White House and on the tax-payer dime. It's unknown the degree to which Kushner and Mnuchin were using their positions in the U.S. government to ensure they had a plan for a post-White House money-making scheme.


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These questions surface amid allegations from Republicans that Hunter Biden used his father's name, which he shares, to get a paid position on boards. Hunter Biden, however, has never worked in government, the White House, the Vice President's office, or for his father's U.S. Senate office. Trump welcomed his family into the White House as advisers despite nepotism laws.

Ali Velshi, who was filling in for Lawrence O'Donnell on Monday, told Maddow that cases about Kushner and Mnuchin are difficult to prove.

"The stench thing, you know, there used to be a day when that kind of stuff just led to shame?" Velshi asked. "It certainly kept you out of political life later. But that's not there anymore either. Whether you can prove or not prove quid pro quo, that — absence of the revolving door that you described is compelling."

"Well, the shame issue here, I think is compelling, Ali, because obviously, the Republicans, particularly Trump partisans, are aware that it is shameful to use government service or family connection to government service, to make a private gain for yourself, and have private business gain," said Maddow. "Because they use this as a way to try to attack President Biden's family, for example, all the time. They know that this is something that is shameful and terrible, and that nobody should ever want to do, and they try to pin all sorts of stuff with that kind of a category on all sorts of Democrats. They know it's wrong. But when they do it, they're assuming that if we bring it up, that their shame isn't operable."

"It's a strange phenomenon," Velshi noted.

See the exchange below or at this link.

Hunter Biden never served in government -- but Jared Kushner certainly did