"Nepotism is kind of a factor of life": Eric Trump shrugs off his family's takeover of the White House

Eric Trump believes nepotism is a factor of life but denies he'd be in this position if he didn't do a good job

By Charlie May
April 5, 2017 2:00PM (UTC)
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In this photo taken May 12, 2016, Eric Trump, son of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, responds to questions during an interview in New York. The windows of Eric Trump’s office in the Trump Tower offer breathtaking views of some of Manhattan’s most expensive real estate. It’s there the youngest of Donald Trump’s adult sons is reflecting on eye-opening moments from a world far away. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II) (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

To Eric Trump, receiving special treatment because of his father's success is just business as usual.

“Nepotism is kind of a factor of life,” Eric Trump told Forbes in an interview published on Tuesday. The youngest of the two Trump brothers now in control of the Trump Organization explained that his father saw to his and his siblings' professional success. “We might be here because of nepotism, but we’re not still here because of nepotism. You know, if we didn’t do a good job, if we weren’t competent, believe me, we wouldn’t be in this spot," he continued.


The president announced last week that his eldest daughter, Ivanka, will work in the White House as an unpaid adviser. Her husband, Jared Kushner, is already a senior White House adviser that has been tasked with overseeing a technological revolution, brokering peace between Israel and Palestine, and just this week, traveled to Iraq.

Yet Trump said of his father: "He’s a guy, no matter where it is, he expects people to perform. And if they’re not performing, he kind of encourages them to go on their way."

The son of the real estate mogul and current president of the United States said that he believes part of the reason his family is so close is because he and his siblings have never once let their father down."You know the one thing, Don, Ivanka and I never let him down really in any factor of life. And I think it’s one of the reasons that we’re as innately close as we are,” Trump stated.


Robert Jones, a nepotism expert at Missouri State University, told Forbes that Trump's lack of self-awareness is actually quite common for the children of privilege. “For most of us who have been given privilege, to some extent we don’t even know it,” Jones said. “I mean, we’re just not even aware of the opportunities we’re given. And it kind of dawns on us over time if we’ve got our eyes open and are looking for it.”

In another Forbes interview published last month, Trump inadvertently admitted that he does discuss “the bottom line, profitability reports [of the Trump Organization] and stuff like that" with his father -- clumsily disclosing how ethically inappropriate his family’s business ties are now that his father occupies the White House.

Charlie May

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Donald Trump Eric Trump Forbes Magazine Nepotism