Nicole Meyer (younger sister of President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner) may have been obtuse about the American optics in Beijing on Saturday, but she was spot-on with the Chinese culture when she pitched a crowd of rich Chinese about her family's latest EB-5 investment in Jersey City, N.J., right across the Hudson from mid-town Manhattan.
After all, the Chinese expect the children of national leaders (the so-called "princelings") to be prosperous and well-connected. (Meyer, of course, is not a direct descendent, but is an in-law to one, Ivanka Trump.)
Both the New York Times and the Washington Post reported this morning that Meyer participated in EB-5 sales meetings in Beijing on Saturday and in Shanghai on Sunday. Both papers reported that their reporters had been "kicked out" of the Saturday session.
Something like 90 percent of those putting up half a million dollars for a set of green cards through the EB-5 program are from China.
The Times reported:
Nicole Meyer cited her brother's service to the company, which he led as chief executive until January. She said that the project in Jersey City "means a lot to me and my entire family."
This prospective luxury apartment building is One Journal Square (and thus near to a commuter rail station leading to both Wall Street and mid-town Manhattan) and is not to be confused with Trump Bay Street, an earlier Jersey City Kushner development that used the Trump name under a licensing agreement. There are to be 1,500 luxury apartments in the first of the two buildings to be constructed at Journal Square.
Subsequently a U.S.-based publicist for the Kushner Companies sent an email to the Post saying that it "apologizes if that mention of her brother was in any way interpreted as an attempt to lure investors. That was not Ms. Meyer's intention."
It was a bad four days for those seeking to reform the controversial, scandal-ridden EB-5 program. On Thursday the president signed an omnibus appropriations bill that kept the central part of EB-5 alive until September 30 of this year; on Friday that law went into effect; Saturday was the Beijing event; and Sunday was the Shanghai one.