Jared Kushner placed Observer Media into a family trust when he joined his father-in-law, President Trump, as an adviser in the White House — but not before he tried to unload the publication to a pair of left-leaning political operatives.
Kushner was secretly engaged in talks to sell his struggling news organization — which had abandoned its weekly print edition right after the 2016 election — to billionaire Univision Chairman Haim Saban and David Brock, the progressive media figure with aspirations to turn the news outlet into “the Breitbart of the left,” according to BuzzFeed.
Brock had made his mark as a right-wing political operative but then switched sides and became closely aligned with Bill and Hillary Clinton. He went on to found the watchdog group Media Matters for America and the American Bridge PAC.
The Observer was one of the few papers in the country to endorse Trump for president and a sale, had it gone through, would have placed the publication in the hands of active Trump opponents.
Ken Kurson, the paper’s editor at the time, said Kushner did not initiate the talks and largely recused himself after an initial discussion, according to BuzzFeed.
But Kushner’s brother-in-law, Joseph Meyer, the Observer publisher, was part of the sale talks.
Kurson met Brock one-on-one in January 2017 at the Greenwich Hotel to discuss a potential sale.
“I kept looking up to see if there was a black condor circling overhead, but in person this legendary Democratic assassin is perfectly friendly and reasonable,” said Kurson. “I was hoping a deal would happen, because for me personally, once Jared went to Washington, the fun of editing the Observer was diminished.”
Meyer and Kurson could not be reached for further comment.
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