Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump were planning a vacation. They’d spent the last four years in the West Wing, and a year before that on the campaign trail. It’s not that they didn’t go on vacation while they served as senior advisers to her father, former president Donald Trump. They did—early on, to Aspen after the failed attempt to overturn Obamacare and then to the posh Twin Farms in Vermont following the Charlottesville riots. They vacationed on horseback in Wyoming and on the beach in Florida. This holiday would be different, though. They wouldn’t be coming back to Washington, at least not in any official capacity. Her father had lost, despite his efforts to overturn a free and fair election. He had whipped up his supporters and, through tweets and rallies to which Ivanka accompanied him, incited them to stage an insurrection. State attorneys general discussed postpresidency investigations into the family’s business and campaign practices. The House of Representatives voted to impeach him, for a second time.
So, Jared and Ivanka were looking for a breather. One of the places they toyed with going was the Yellowstone Club, the private residential ski club in Big Sky, Montana, that reportedly counts Bill Gates, Eric Schmidt, and Justin Timberlake as members and charges them many hundreds of thousands of dollars in initiation fees and membership dues to enjoy the 2,200 acres of powder. Jared’s brother, Joshua Kushner, has a home there. So does their friend Ron Burkle, the billionaire investor who co-owns the Pittsburgh Penguins and Soho House, as well as several significant properties, from Michael Jackson’s infamous Neverland Ranch to a John Lautner home in Palm Springs. According to four people familiar with the situation, Burkle offered up his Montana property to the couple. But the Yellowstone Club’s COVID safety protocols, which limit the number of guests who are allowed to come stay, waylaid Javanka’s potential trip, according to these people, though some suggested that the club was also eager to avoid the headache of having the lightning rod of a couple there. Burkle, three of the people said, offered them his other properties for their vacation, but the couple ultimately declined. (Burkle, a longtime Democrat who went to the Trump White House in 2017 to shake hands with Trump after the Penguins won the Stanley Cup, is not a fair-weather friend, one person close to him said. He does not feel pressured to duck Jared and Ivanka or shy away from them as others will.)
It looks as though the Trump-Kushners have settled for some downtime in Florida, where they rented a sweeping, unfurnished apartment in a new luxury oceanfront building in Miami’s Surfside neighborhood for at least the next year while they build a house on a $32 million lot that they bought last year on Indian Creek Island. They’re eagerly eyeing the time off, a close associate of the couple told me on Wednesday, as millions of people celebrate Trump’s departure and many, too, are just as ready for a break from them. “They’re looking forward to having a clean break. They haven’t yet gone into what comes next and their government work is done. It is a moment in their lives to focus exclusively on family and just relax.”
They did not fly with her father down to Palm Beach on Air Force One on Wednesday morning, though they did attend his farewell speech at Joint Base Andrews along with their children and the other Trump siblings. (Memes across the internet captured a shot from the morning in which Ivanka appears to be teary-eyed as she watched her father. The internet, in its typical way, had its fun suggesting why she might, in fact, be weeping—perhaps because she knew what fate awaited her.) The couple will stay in Washington for the coming weeks, according to this associate, as they tie up loose ends and move out of their Kalorama home.
It’s been a week filled with goodbyes in D.C. for the couple. Late on Tuesday afternoon, the final full day of their West Wing stint, Jared and Ivanka brought their three children to the Oval Office for a private goodbye to the space and to their grandfather as president. Soon after, they were joined by all the assistants to the president—at least, the ones who were still left—for a group photograph. In this midst of their own goodbyes, they Zoomed into their son’s class to mark his last few days in school. Jared and Ivanka, who looked as though they were Zooming from their offices, were projected in separate digital boxes as they watched the children sing a song together, according to a video of the performance captured by someone in the room and shared with me. As the day wound down on Tuesday, they were two of the last people to leave their offices.
Before their goodbyes, Ivanka and Jared spent the final week helping President Trump sort through his last-minute pardon blitz. Jared helped push through the commutation of Chris Young, a 32-year-old who had served 10 years of a 14-year sentence for his role in a drug conspiracy. Kushner had worked on the case for the last few years with Kim Kardashian West, and Kushner called her this week to share the news. The couple also worked on the pardons and commutations of Lil Wayne, Michael Harris, Jawad Musa, Desiree Perez, and Kodak Black. Jared’s longtime loyal associate, Ken Kurson, also received a pardon on Wednesday morning. Kurson, who served as editor in chief when Jared owned the New York Observer and remained close to the couple once they moved to Washington, had been charged with cyberstalking. Weeks earlier, Jared’s father, Charles Kushner, also received a pardon for his fraud and witness tampering-related crimes.
It wasn’t all pardons. Ivanka also spent some of her final days in the administration promoting photos of herself working on initiatives with farmers and inside factories—with no acknowledgement of the riots her father and her family helped incite, the divide they’d created, and the ruin they’d left in their wake.
None of the people with whom the Trump-Kushners used to socialize, including recently, are rushing toward them now that they’re about to leave Washington—besides a small few like Burkle. That’s not to say that people won’t, once the temperature across the country dials down and the world begins to rights itself. Most of their associates know they are toxic, but just as many of them are aware of how rich they are and what power money will always wield, even if no one wants to be caught with them. Others seem eager to never think of them again. “Thank you for your service…or whatever that was?” Lauren Santo Domingo, the social denizen and queen of the the Uptown Resistance, said on Wednesday. “I think we all could use a vacation after that.”
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