Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner to accompany President on PA visit

Will be joined by White House advisor and negotiator Jason Greenblatt; Avi Berkowitz, assistant to President, already in Pittsburgh.

JTA - Mordechai Sones ,

Air Force One
Air Force One

Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner will accompany President Donald Trump and his wife, Melania, in visiting Pittsburgh today in the wake of the synagogue shooting that killed 11 worshipers.

The addition of the President’s Jewish daughter and son-in-law to the entourage was reported this morning.

They will be joined as well by White House advisor and Mideast peace negotiator Jason Greenblatt. Avi Berkowitz, assistant to the President, already is on the ground in Pittsburgh.

Trump is scheduled to spend about three hours in the city. Air Force One is scheduled to land in Pittsburgh at 3:45 p.m.

White House Spokeswoman Sara Huckabee Sanders said yesterday in announcing the President’s visit that the Trumps will “express the support of the American people and grieve with the Pittsburgh community.”

“The President cherishes the American-Jewish community for everything it stands for and contributes to our country,” she said. “He adores Jewish Americans as part of his own family. The President is the grandfather of several Jewish children. His daughter is a Jewish American and his son-in-law is a descendant of Holocaust survivors.”

In an interview last night with Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, Trump echoed that “I’m just going to pay my respects. I’m also going to the hospital to see the officers and some of the people that were so badly hurt. And I really look forward to going. I would have done it even sooner but I didn’t want to disrupt even more than they have disruption.”

House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-California; Senate Minoirity leader Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York; Senate Majority Leader Sen. Mitch Mcconnell, R-Kentucky; and House Speaker Rep. Paul Ryan, R. Wisconsin, all declined invitations to join the president in Pittsburgh, CNN reported.

The report also said that Pittsburgh mayor Bill Peduto will not appear with Trump, citing his Spokesman. Peduto told CNN in an interview yesterday that he advised Trump’s aides that a visit today was too early.

“Mayor Peduto’s sole focus today is on the funerals and supporting the families,” Tim McNulty, Peduto’s communications director, told CNN Tuesday.

Pittsburgh County Executive Rich Fitzgerald also said he would not meet with Trump in order to focus on the community. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pennsylvania, also was invited to join Trump but is scheduled to be in another part of the state on Tuesday.

Jeffrey Myers, leader of the Tree of Life Congregation, told CNN on Monday that Trump is “always welcome.”

“I’m a citizen. He’s my president. He’s certainly welcome,” Myers said.

In contrast, the 11 members of the Pittsburgh chapter of Bend the Arc, a Jewish liberal social justice group, wrote in an open letter to Trump that he was not welcome in Pittsburgh.

The visit comes on the same day as the first victims’ funerals.

Services for brothers Cecil and David Rosenthal are scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. The funeral for Dr. Jerry Rabinowitz is set for 11 a.m.