Jared Kushner, Trump’s son in law, would not be the first!

November 17, 2016

Secy of Tres, William McAdoo

According to the Wall Street Journal, Donald Trump’s son in law, Jared Kushner is now being considered for a prominent White House job. He would not be the first son in law to hold a prominent position with a president. Consider the story of William McAdoo.

William McAdoo served in President Woodrow Wilson’s cabinet as the Secretary of Treasury. He was married to Woodrow Wilson’s daughter Eleanor, called “Nellie.”

Secretary McAdoo had a stellar career, servings as a U.S. Senator from California. Twice McAdoo was the Democratic front runner for president. He led on the first ballot at the DNC in 1920 and again in 1924.

More than 18 sons of presidents served with their father in the White House. And 14 daughter in laws served in some capacity in the White House as well.

Most recently, Barbara Eisenhower, the wife of John Eisenhower and daughter in law to President Dwight Eisenhower, served as the president’s hostess during out of town and international trips. Mamie Eisenhower, the first lady, had a terrible fear of flying and so Barbara became the president’s official companion on trips across the country.

In March, 1987, George W. Bush was brought into Washington, D.C. to help his father’s presidential campaign. I was running coalitions and George Bush, Jr. as he then called himself, was inserted above me. It was my privilege to travel with him in private jets, car caravans, buses, and commercial air travel and see him up close.


Jared Kushner

Bush, the son, became known as “the loyalty enforcer” and was so effective that I didn’t know how his father would be able to run the White House without him. But George Bush, Jr. was intent on returning to Texas to buy the Ranger and run for governor.

I had many conversations with him about it. Both Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter had brought their sons into the White House to work with them, putting them on the RNC and DNC payroll respectively.

“Dad doesn’t want any Bush working in the White House.”

I frequently challenged him on the issue. Once in a meeting I casually mentioned a cousin who had helped us with the campaign and was wanting to work there.

A few days later he brought the cousin in while I was sitting with him in the office.

“Where do you want to work,” Bush snapped.

The cousin stuttered and said softly, “Well, I was thinking about…”

“No White House,” George W. shouted. “No Bush is going to work in the White House.”

“Well,” the cousin tried again, speaking softly, “I was thinking that maybe just for the first few months…”

“No. No Bush will work in the White House!” George W. reiterated. And his cousin nodded.

But a few months later, I was driving in through the White House gates for my job as special assistant to the president and  there was his cousin, stopped at the gate being given a rough time by the guards. I stopped and helped identify him.

He had indeed, in spite of George, Junior’s insistence, gotten a job in the bowels of the OEOB and as it turned out he was incredibly important in helping to keep staffers loyal and on track. Just the threat of someone walking down the hall and talking to a Bush made all the difference int he world.

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Doug Wead on staff with George H.W. Bush.

If George W. Bush had worked in his father’s White House there is no doubt in my mind that his father would have won re-election. George would have helped block the Richard Darman tax increase that broke his father’s campaign pledge, “Read my lips, no new taxes.”

But if having him on White House staff would have assured his father’s re-election in 1992, it would have also likely ruled out any future political career of his own. He would have helped his father’s presidency but lost any chance for his own.

Jared Kushner on senior White House staff makes a lot of sense. For Trump and for the nation.

Start reading NYT bestseller, All the Presidents’ Children on Kindle in less than a minute.

Trump kids can work in the White House

November 14, 2016


Throughout American history it has been common and useful for presidential children to work with their fathers in the White House. A presidential child can be a different piece on the chess board, with different abilities from any other.

One can never be fired from the position of “son” or “daughter” which gives them the rare ability to take the risk of confronting the president on sensitive issues that would not be appropriately discussed outside of the family.

They can make decisions and assume responsibility for actions that others cannot.

One of the biggest problems in government is that at the highest levels decisions are not made. If you make a decision and it is well done, the president, rightly gets the credit.  If you make a wrong decision you are punished or fired. If you make no decision at all you are often safe. It is harder to fix the blame on one who failed to decide. Thus the president is hurt by lack of decisions.

This is less likely at the COS staff level where there is constant access to the president but it will proliferate quickly at lower levels.

A family member, however, can force a decision in a crisis and take that risk.

His or hers very presence gives a WH policy whistle-blower a chance to give crucial information up the ladder without fear.

But don’t modern anti nepotism laws rule out the appointment of a son or daughter? (1967 law.)

Modern presidents have circumvented this law by putting their son or daughter on the party payroll. Thus a Jack Ford or Chip Carter had – at various times – an office in the White House but were on the RNC and DNC payroll respectively. Susan Ford worked as a White House photographer.

Some children of presidents, such as Webb Hayes and Anna Roosevelt, had extraordinary powers in the White House. There is a scene in my book All the Presidents’ Children where First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt begs to be on the manifest for the historic trip to Yalta. Anna, her daugher, says no.

Many in-laws, also, served prominent roles. Ike’s son John Eisenhower and his wife Barabara lived in the WH. First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower was afraid of flying so the daughter in law became the official hostess on the road, traveling with the president on out of town and some foreign visits.

Start reading NYT bestseller, All the Presidents’ Children on Kindle in less than a minute.


(President Elect Donald Trump and Doug Wead)

Here is a list of presidential children who worked in the White House with their fathers?

George Adams

John Adams,II

Abraham Van Buren

Martin Van Buren, Jr.

Robert Tyler, Jr.

Richard Taylor

Millard Powers Fillmore

Robert Johnson

Ulsses Grant, Jr.

James “Webb” Hayes

Russel Benjamin Harrison

Anna Roosevelt

John Eisenhower

Jack Ford

Susan Ford

James “Chip” Carter

Pigs in the Parlor: How the Trump White House will get rolled if it doesn’t watch out.

November 13, 2016



Donald Trump may have won the election but the Washington pigs are ready to rush the White House and run his government for him. It will be hard to keep them at bay. So far he looks like he’s got this figured out.

Here’s how it works.

He has to have specialists who can run the different departments of the White House. And that means people who have done it before. If you want someone to run Communications, they will tell him, you have to have someone who has run Communications at the Pentagon or HHS. Someone who has experience.

You can’t just bring in a ballplayer to the Major Leagues if they have had no experience in college ball or the Minor Leagues. And you can’t bring up a first baseman and expect him to play third base.

So once you bring in that new White House Director of Public Liaison, for example, who ran coalitions on Capitol Hill or at the Labor Department, or for Senator Snort, who hated Trump, he or she will quickly populate it with friends. They will open the door and rush them in. “Quick, quick, before they close the door.”

All of Senator Snort’s people will be in there. Trump haters.

“Oh, we need her, Mr. President, she knows how to do this in her sleep. She’s the best.”

“Hiya, Mr. President,” Giggle, giggle. “Yes, I didn’t vote for you but boy am I now convinced that you are the best!” Giggles and squeals.

The few loyal Trump folks will soon be isolated and set-up for failures which will be leaked to the pig buddies in the media who are happy to oblige since they have known the pigs for years and depend on the pigs for their stories.

The Weekly Piggy Magazine will have their folks stop by, urging the new Trump White House to promote government grants to the Hogwarts Think Tank, which buys ads in their magazine which pays their salary, which pays their mortgage.

And if the Trump White House doesn’t play along with the corruption they will have Miss Piggy, who writes a column for their magazine, appear on Fox News to declare, “Trump is not a true conservative he is now abandoning the Hogwarts Think Tank! Imagine that? Reagan loved Hogwarts.

Most pundits correctly predicted that Trump would bring in the Big Bad Wolf to be his Chief of Staff. But to Mr. Trump’s disgust, in time, he may learn that the Big Bad Wolf also likes the pigs. It makes him appear downright loyal by comparison.

The Big Bad Wolf may even sacrifice loyal Trump folk and sometimes feed them to the pigs. He would tell Mr. Trump that he, the Big Bad Wolf, alone stands between the president and a devouring host.

“I told those little piggies, Mr. President, that if they don’t behave I will huff and I will puff and I will blooooow their houses in.”

“Thanks Big Bad Wolf,” Trump will say. Thank God that at least YOU are loyal to me.”

But it looks like that isn’t going to happen to Trump. He’s not only going to bring in the Big Bad Wolf, by himself, now he’s going to bring in Roadrunner too. He will have both of them run things at the White House. One can blow their houses down if they don’t get the work done and the other can run circles around them.

So what more can you ask?

I’ll tell you. Trump needs a troika, a triad. Two will fight. Three, as Reagan taught us with Baker, Deaver and Meese, are even better. You will have one who can offer the tie breaking vote.

So yes, the President-Elect is almost there. But he still needs Yosemite Sam, you know who I’m talking about? The one who shouts and has a short temper. Trump’s got his Baker and his Meese. But he still needs his loyalty enforcer. His Lewandoski. At least to get things started. Because in the White House, the President knows, loyalty Trumps competence.

Now those are the pigs in the parlor.

What’s outside? The corporations with their lobbyists who want everyone to be burdened by regulations, except themselves. Who want money direct from the government, without competitive bids.  And who want money direct from the Federal Reserve where they can just print it as electronic numbers on a page.

And they aren’t pigs. They are hogs.  And they are really, really dangerous. Even the Big Bad Wolf is afraid of them. Roadrunner can only run for the hills. Yosemite Sam can only stutter. But that’s another story for another blog post.

Why Trump wins even if he loses

November 7, 2016

It all comes down to tomorrow.


If Trump wins he will be president. If he doesn’t win, well, he wins anyway. He is a businessman who will have come out way ahead. He went into the race with a 63% name recognition factor and comes out with 99%. He had a measurable brand loyalty of 8% but comes out with 44%. Not bad.

For me, as someone who loves and studies history this has been a wonderful and humbling experience following the action this election cycle.

In the next two days I will be making six appearances on three television networks. I will try to keep family and friends apprised of hit times by Twitter.

Here was an appearance on Sunday morning.

The closest elections in modern history.


Have we ever had an election choice like this?

October 19, 2016

In 1884, the electorate had to chose between a corrupt politician, who took money in exchange for favors and a New York misogynist.

The misogynist was a lawyer. He and his partners shared the sexual favors of a young lady. When she became pregnant he stepped forward to assume paternity. When one of his partners died he became the guardian of his daughter. When she became a teenager she fell in love with him. When she turned 21 they were married. In the White House.

She was the youngest First Lady in American history. He was the only president to be married in the White House. Grover Cleveland and Frances Folsom.

The loser in the election of 1884? James Blaine.

Kilmeade’s bestseller is now in paper

October 17, 2016

This is a fun, fast, heart-pumping read. Or listen to it on audio.  It will forever change your view of today’s war with Islamic terrorism.


Here’s one of my favorite history books, now going paperback!

Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War That Changed America
by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger

1. Here is the Amazon link for Twitter, Facebook, your email list, or anywhere else:


2.  And special for many, like me, who are fans of Fox and Friends, you can get your PERSONALIZED edition on Brian’s website.  Buyers can request a special message which Brian will write and sign.



Trump Wins, his rape charge haunts.

October 9, 2016

The mainstream media was stunned by Donald Trump’s performance Sunday night and is working overtime to offer some misdirection over his specific charges about Bill and Hillary Clinton’s victimizing and targeting of women.

The Associated Press, Politico and others are debunking Trump’s claim about Hillary laughing over the rape case.

But here you go. Listen to the audiotape for yourself. This from an earlier posted YouTube.