The possibility that Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, could fill a senior position in the White House raises thorny legal questions – one of which is whether it would run afoul of a federal anti-nepotism statute. Kushner was a close adviser to Trump throughout his campaign, but to officially employ Kushner in the White House would mean navigating the ambiguities surrounding the five-decades-old law.
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Congress passed the anti-nepotism law in 1967. It’s widely perceived that the lawmakers who wrote the statute were motivated in part by President Kennedy’s nomination of his brother Robert as attorney general. But the legislation was also directed at much lower-profile nepotism at the time. For example, it was fairly common for congressmen to hire their wives to work in their offices, and many lawmakers wanted to stop that practice.