- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 28, 2017

MSNBC host Chris Matthews on Monday compared Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s prominent roles in the White House to the power wielded by the late Saddam Hussein’s two eldest sons during his reign in Iraq.

“Do you think this bothers the country to have sort of a Romanov royal family running the place?” the “Hardball” host asked Politico’s Annie Karni during Monday night’s broadcast, The Blaze reported.

“Because let me just say, you know, we kid, I kid about everything, but Uday and Qusay working for Saddam Hussein: You couldn’t go to a restaurant and have eye contact with one of those guys without getting killed,” Mr. Matthews said.

“These people are really powerful,” he added. “Imagine getting into a fight, in the office, with Jared or Ivanka, they have enormous power, and they’re always going to be there.”

Ms. Karni said she’s worried that their presence in the White House is intimidating other staffers.

“This is what I worry about for other people in the White House,” she said. “Ivanka Trump has been described as her father’s eyes and ears on the ground. That’s a little scary if you’re just a regular White House staffer.”

Mr. Matthews‘ comments came after President Trumpannounced he was appointing Mr. Kushner, his son-in-law, to run a new White House office aimed at reforming the federal government. It was also reported last week that Ivanka, Mr. Kushner’s wife, is working out of a West Wing office, though she is not technically serving as a government employee.

This isn’t the first time Mr. Matthews has compared the Trump family to the Husseins. In July 2015, he suggested that then-presidential candidate Ted Cruz feared Mr. Trump the same way the Iraqi people feared Uday and Qusay Hussein.

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