CNN’s Toobin: Jared Kushner having power is ‘an embarrassment’

CNN's Jeffrey Toobin on Wednesday tore into Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerDeutsche Bank launches investigation into longtime banker of Trump, Kushner Watchdog group accuses Stephen Miller of violating Hatch Act with Biden comments Ivanka and Kushner earned at least M in outside income last year: financial disclosures MORE's role in the Trump administration, saying that it's "an embarrassment that he has any power at all."

As panelists on "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer" discussed whether Kushner should be involved in discussions with Saudi Arabia about missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi due to his personal relationship with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Toobin interjected to question whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpWhite House sued over lack of sign language interpreters at coronavirus briefings Wife blames Trump, lack of masks for husband's coronavirus death in obit: 'May Karma find you all' Trump authorizes reduced funding for National Guard coronavirus response through 2020 MORE's son-in-law should have a role in the White House at all.

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"Is there anything that qualifies Jared Kushner to be dealing with any of these issues?" he inquired. "He's an unsuccessful real estate developer who inherited millions of dollars and married the president's daughter. He's completely unqualified. This is gross nepotism and it's just an embarrassment that he has any power at all."

Kushner has faced criticism for his ties to the crown prince following Khashoggi's disappearance.

Administration officials expressed concerns about his communications with Crown Prince Mohammed on private channels, including through the encrypted messaging service WhatsApp, CNN reported Wednesday.

Kushner's relationship with the crown prince reportedly raised concerns among national security staffers early in his White House role and has come under increased scrutiny as U.S. officials try to get answers about Khashoggi.

Turkish intelligence officials have said that Khashoggi was killed inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul earlier this month when he went to get paperwork for his marriage.

Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoHillicon Valley: Trump backs potential Microsoft, TikTok deal, sets September deadline | House Republicans request classified TikTok briefing | Facebook labels manipulated Pelosi video Top House Republicans request classified TikTok briefing Democrats subpoena top aides to Pompeo MORE met with Saudi King Salman on Tuesday to discuss the situation and is scheduled to brief President Trump on the meeting on Wednesday. 

In the same CNN segment, reporter Kaitlan Collins said that Kushner did not accompany Pompeo on his trip to Riyadh because "White House officials were scared there was going to be a lot of backlash" if Kushner attended the meeting.