Tillerson, Kelly Reportedly Frustrated With Jared Kushner Running U.S. Foreign Policy

Politico reports that John Kelly has repeated Rex Tillerson's complaints, which were not take well by Kushner

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Jared Kushner, center, listens as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a Security Council meeting on the situation in Palestine, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 at United Nations headquarters.
Jared Kushner, center, listens as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a Security Council meeting on the situation in Palestine, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 at United Nations headquartersCredit: AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and White House chief of staff John Kelly are reportedly frustrated with Jared Kushner's trespassing into Tillerson's turf, according to Politico.

Tillerson has long been rumored to be upset with Kushner for “running a second foreign policy,” especially when it comes to the Middle East and Israel. Kushner does have an officially portfolio which includes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Mexico and China.

Tillerson also reportedly expressed frustration about U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and national security adviser H.R. McMaster encroachment on his position.

“We can’t have four secretaries of state,” Tillerson said.

Politico added that Kelly has repeated Tillerson's complaints, which reportedly have not been taken well by Kushner.

"We need a secretary of state who is supportive of the president," Kushner told Kelly, according to Politico.

In November 2017, it had been widely reported that Kelly was hatching a plan to replace Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo in early 2018.

Kushner's security clearance

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday he will leave it to Kelly to settle a security clearance dispute involving son-in-law and top aide Jared Kushner, but left little doubt he wants the case settled in a way that allows Kushner to keep his job.

Problems with security clearance for White House aides surfaced this month in fallout over the abrupt resignation of White House staff secretary Rob Porter over allegations of domestic abuse against two former wives.

Kushner is one of dozens of aides operating under an interim clearance, not yet fully cleared due to complications in their backgrounds. In the case of Kushner, a wealthy New York businessman, his financial links have taken a long time to examine.

Kelly a week ago set Friday as the deadline for adjudicating the cases of Kushner and others in clearance limbo. A source familiar with the matter said earlier this week that the situation had caused tensions between Kushner and Kelly.

Trump, at a joint news conference with visiting Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, said "General Kelly respects Jared a lot and General Kelly will make that call" on how to resolve the issue.

With Kelly seated nearby, Trump said: "I have no doubt he will make the right decision."

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