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Boris Epshteyn

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Boris Epshteyn
Personal details
Boris Epshteyn

(1982-08-14) August 14, 1982 (age 41)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Political partyRepublican
SpouseLauren Tanick
EducationSwarthmore College
Georgetown University

Boris Epshteyn (/ˈɛpstn/ EP-styn;[1] born August 14, 1982) is an American Republican political strategist, attorney, and investment banker. He was a strategic advisor on the Donald Trump 2020 presidential campaign and has remained a close advisor to Trump in his post-presidency.[2] He was the chief political commentator at Sinclair Broadcast Group until December 2019.[3] He was a senior advisor to Donald Trump's 2016 campaign for President of the United States, and previously worked on the John McCain 2008 presidential campaign. Following Trump's election, he was named director of communications for the Presidential Inaugural Committee,[4] and then assistant communications director for surrogate operations in the White House Office, until he resigned in March 2017. He was a member of a team of Trump lawyers[5][6] who sought to prevent the certification of Joe Biden's victory in the 2020 presidential election. In April 2024, Epshteyn would be indicted in Arizona for his alleged in role in the fake elector plot for the state.[7][8]

Early life and education


Epshteyn was born in 1982 in Moscow, Soviet Union, the son of Anna Shulkina and Aleksandr Epshteyn. His family are Russian Jews.[9] In 1993, he immigrated as a refugee with his family to the US, and settled in Plainsboro Township, New Jersey,[10] under the Lautenberg amendment of 1990.[11] He graduated from West Windsor-Plainsboro High School in 2000.[12][13] In 2000, he matriculated at Swarthmore College, which he attended for one year before transferring to Georgetown University.[14]

Epshteyn graduated from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service (BSFS, 2004). During his time as an undergraduate at Georgetown, Epshteyn joined the Eta Sigma chapter of the Alpha Epsilon Pi (AEPi) fraternity.[15] He graduated from the Georgetown University Law Center with a Juris Doctor in 2007.[16]



Following his graduation from law school, Epshteyn was part of the finance practice of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy. He worked on securities transactions, private placements, and bank finance.[17]

In 2008, Epshteyn was a communications aide with the McCain-Palin campaign. While at the campaign, he was part of a rapid response task force that concentrated on issues related to vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.[18]

Epshteyn was managing director of business and legal affairs at the boutique investment bank West America Securities Corporation until the firm was expelled by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority in 2013.[19] He was managing director of business and legal affairs for investment banking firm TGP Securities from 2013 to 2017.[17] In October 2013, Epshteyn moderated a panel at the investment conference "Invest in Moscow!". The panel was composed mainly of Moscow city government officials, including Sergey Cheremin, a city minister who heads Moscow's foreign economic and international relations department.[20]

2016 Trump campaign


During the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, Epshteyn acted as a senior advisor to the Donald Trump campaign, making frequent television appearances as a Trump media surrogate on Trump's behalf.[20]

In September 2016, Epshteyn responded to a question from MSNBC's Hallie Jackson by offering a new explanation for why a portrait of Trump – paid for by the Donald J. Trump Foundation – wound up on display at Trump National Doral Miami, a Trump-owned for-profit golf resort in Florida. Epshteyn said, "There are IRS rules which specifically state that when a foundation has an item, an individual can store those items – on behalf of the foundation – in order to help it with storage costs... And that's absolutely proper." Epshteyn's explanation was, in effect, that Trump had not used his foundation to buy some art for his resort, which would be self-dealing. Instead, Trump's resort was helping the foundation – which has no employees or office space of its own – to store one of its possessions.[21] Epshteyn's explanation failed to account for why the storage services required that portrait be displayed in public, as opposed to being maintained in a storage space. Similarly, Epshteyn failed to explain why the Trump National Doral Miami provided such storage services only for the Trump Foundation and only for a portrait of Trump.

In September 2016, the media watchdog organization Media Matters for America criticized CNN, Fox News, and PBS for failing to disclose Epshteyn's "financial ties to the former Soviet Union, which include consulting through Strategy International LLC for 'entities doing business in Eastern Europe' and moderating a Russian-sponsored conference on 'investment opportunities in Moscow'".[22]

In an October 2016 article in The New York Times, three political commentators said in separate interviews that Epshteyn "often acted in a rude, condescending manner toward show staffers, makeup artists and others". Joy Reid, an MSNBC show host, said "Boris is abrasive. That is who he is both on the air and off."[9]

Epshteyn co-hosted the Trump Campaign Facebook Live coverage before and after the final presidential debate. He also anchored Trump Tower Live, the Trump campaign's Facebook Live nightly program.[23]

During the 2020 U.S. presidential campaign, Epshteyn acted as a senior advisor to the Trump campaign.

On November 25, 2020, it was reported that he had tested positive for coronavirus.[24]

Trump administration


Epshteyn became a special assistant in the Trump administration as it took office. He wrote Trump's controversial statement for Holocaust Remembrance Day in January 2017, which omitted any mention of the Jewish people.[25] Following criticism of the omission, press secretary Sean Spicer defended the statement as written by "an individual who is both Jewish and the descendent of Holocaust survivors."[25][26] At the end of March 2017, Epshteyn resigned.[27]

Sinclair Broadcast Group


In mid-April 2017, Sinclair announced it had hired Epshteyn as its senior political analyst. Regarding the appointment, Scott Livingston at Sinclair said in part, "We understand the frustration with government and traditional institutions." Epshteyn said in part, "I greatly admire Sinclair's mission to provide thoughtful impactful reporting throughout the country." At the time, Variety also noted Jared Kushner's December 2016 revelation of discussions between the Trump campaign and the company and content provided to the company which, the report said, Sinclair had "vehemently denied".[28] His segment on Sinclair ended in late 2019.

Trump advisor


Epshteyn was the strategic advisor and co-chair of the Jewish Voices for Trump Advisory Board for Trump's 2020 re-election campaign.[29] He led the campaign's Jewish outreach, appearing in media interviews across national outlets and participating in large-scale events across the country, including in Florida, Pennsylvania, and New York.[30]

Trump garnered the highest Jewish support for a Republican presidential candidate since George H. W. Bush in 1988, receiving 30% of the vote nationally[31] and 42% in the key battleground state of Florida,[32] which Trump won. Trump's 2020 results with Jewish voters were higher than his 2016 totals, when he received 24%[33] of the Jewish vote nationally and 30% in Florida.

After Trump lost the election, Epshteyn was a member of a team that gathered at a "command center" in the Willard Hotel one block from the White House days before Joe Biden's victory was to be certified by Vice President Mike Pence in the Senate chamber on January 6. The team's objective was to prevent Biden's victory from being certified. On January 2, Trump and two of his attorneys, Rudy Giuliani and John Eastman, held a conference call with some 300 Republican state legislators in battleground states Biden won to provide them with false allegations of widespread voting fraud they might use to convene special sessions of their legislatures to rescind Biden's winning slates of electors and replace them with slates of Trump electors for Pence to certify. On January 5, dozens of Republican legislators from Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin wrote Pence asking him to delay the January 6 certification for ten days so they would have time to replace the elector slates. Pence did not act on the request and that day also rejected a proposal made by Eastman that a vice president could simply choose to reject the electoral college results; a vice president's role in certifying the results is constitutionally ministerial. Epshteyn told The Washington Post in October 2021 that he continued to believe Pence "had the constitutional power to send the issue back to the states for 10 days to investigate the widespread fraud and report back well in advance of Inauguration Day, January 20th."[34]

Epshteyn worked with Giuliani in December 2020 to persuade Republican officials in seven states to prepare certificates of ascertainment for slates of "alternate electors" loyal to Trump, which would be presented to Pence for certification. Epshteyn and others asserted this was a contingency similar to the 1960 presidential election, in which two slates of electors were prepared pending results of a late recount of ballots in Hawaii. Both parties agreed to that recount, which ultimately resulted in John F. Kennedy winning the state, though the outcome of the election did not hinge on the Hawaii results. By contrast, in the case of the 2020 election, the stated need for slates of alternate electors in multiple states was predicated on persistent unproven claims of nationwide election fraud. Epshteyn asserted the slates of alternate electors were not fraudulent and "it is not against the law, it is according to the law."[6][35][36][37]

After Trump left office, Epshteyn established a close relationship with the former president and has advised him to pursue a confrontational rather than a conciliatory approach toward those investigating Trump.[38] He was subpoenaed in January 2022 to testify before the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.[39]

Epshteyn joined Trump on his trip to Manhattan for his arraignment in April 2023.[40]

Epshteyn was identified by the New York Times as the likely identity of "Co-Conspirator 6" in the August 1, 2023, indictment of Trump for conspiracy.[41]

Epshteyn would eventually be indicted in April 2024 for his alleged role in the fake elector plot concerning the state of Arizona.[8]

Personal life


Epshteyn married Lauren Tanick Epshteyn, a sales manager at Google, in 2009.[16] They have one child.

Epshteyn is a friend of Eric Trump, who also attended Georgetown.[9]


In 2014, Epshteyn was charged with misdemeanor assault after an altercation at a bar. The charge was dropped after he agreed to undergo anger management counseling and perform community service.[9]

On October 10, 2021, Epshteyn was arrested at a night club. Three of the four charges were dismissed.[42] Epshteyn pleaded guilty to "disorderly conduct-disruptive behavior or fighting", for which he served probation. After probation that conviction was set aside.[43] He was also remanded to alcohol treatment.[44]

Epshteyn was indicted for his role in Arizona's fake electors scheme on April 24, 2024.[45][46][8] On June 18, 2024, Epshteyn pled not guilty while speaking to the Maricopa County court by phone.[7][47] Epshteyn is accused of assisting Rudy Giuliani in carrying out the scheme to submit fake electors for Trump in Arizona.[7]


  1. ^ Hakim, Danny; Healy, Jack (June 18, 2024). "Trump's Legal Advisers Plead Not Guilty in Arizona Election Case". The New York Times. Mr. Epshteyn (pronounced EP-stine) has not commented on the case, and his lawyer has not returned requests for comment.
  2. ^ Kumar, Anita (June 9, 2020). "Trump gets the 2016 band back together as he tumbles in polls". Politico. Archived from the original on June 13, 2020. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  3. ^ Atkinson, Claire (December 19, 2019). "Sinclair drops Boris Epshteyn and other political analysts". NBC News. Archived from the original on February 19, 2020. Retrieved February 21, 2020.
  4. ^ "Presidential Inaugural Committee seeks workers and volunteers". The Washington Post. November 23, 2016. Archived from the original on November 26, 2016. Retrieved November 26, 2016.
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  6. ^ a b Swire, Sonnet (January 22, 2022). "Former Trump campaign adviser acknowledges being part of 2020 'alternate electors' plot". CNN. Retrieved April 18, 2022.
  7. ^ a b c Billard, Jacques (June 18, 2024). "Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn pleads not guilty in Arizona's fake elector case". Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn pleads not guilty in Arizona’s fake elector case. Retrieved July 2, 2024.
  8. ^ a b c Hakim, Danny; Haberman, Maggie (April 24, 2024). "Arizona Charges Giuliani and Other Trump Allies in Election Interference Case". The New York Times.
  9. ^ a b c d Meier, Barry; Craig, Susanne (October 13, 2016). "The Obscure Lawyer Who Became Donald Trump's TV Attack Dog". The New York Times. Archived from the original on January 20, 2017. Retrieved January 25, 2017.
  10. ^ Grove, Lloyd. "Sinclair's Trump Toady Swears: 'I'm Not Doing Anybody's Bidding'", The Daily Beast, April 5, 2018. Accessed December 12, 2022. "Epshteyn, who shares a young child with his wife of nine years, Google sales manager Lauren Tanick, was born in Moscow to a Russian-Jewish family; as refugees, they emigrated to Plainsboro Township, New Jersey, when Boris was 11."
  11. ^ Epshteyn, Boris (June 6, 2013). "Thank You Senator Lautenberg: The Lautenberg Amendment opened the door for more religious minorities to find a new life in America". U.S. News & World Report. Archived from the original on December 4, 2018. Retrieved December 3, 2018.
  12. ^ Aurisicchio, Paola. "The Ethnic Profiling of Boris Epshteyn", Trumplandia, May 14, 2018. Accessed December 12, 2022. "Jonathan Elliot was a classmate of Epshteyn's at West Windsor-Plainsboro High School in Princeton Junction."
  13. ^ "High school graduates seniors; West Windsor-Plainsboro members of the Class of 2000 celebrate", Home News Tribune, June 22, 2000. Accessed December 12, 2022, via Newspapers.com.
  14. ^ "Swarthmore Student Council Ballot". The Swarthmore Phoenix. Retrieved April 4, 2023.
  15. ^ "Notable Alumni". aepi.org. Archived from the original on February 19, 2014. Retrieved September 12, 2022.
  16. ^ a b "Lauren Tanick, Boris Epshteyn – Weddings and Celebrations". The New York Times. November 27, 2009. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on March 1, 2017. Retrieved September 29, 2016.
  17. ^ a b "About Us". TGP Securities. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 31, 2017.
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  23. ^ Lapowsky, Issie (October 24, 2016). "Trump's Campaign Is Launching a Nightly News Show on Facebook". Wired. Archived from the original on November 26, 2016. Retrieved November 26, 2016.
  24. ^ Aaro, David (November 25, 2020). "Trump campaign adviser Boris Epshteyn tests positive for coronavirus". Fox News. Archived from the original on November 27, 2020. Retrieved November 27, 2020.
  25. ^ a b Karni, Annie (January 30, 2017). "White House aide Epshteyn wrote controversial Holocaust memorial statement". Politico. Archived from the original on February 4, 2017. Retrieved February 3, 2017.
  26. ^ Salkin, Jeffrey (January 31, 2017). "Meet Trump's Holocaust tutor". Religion News Service. Archived from the original on February 4, 2017. Retrieved February 3, 2017.
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  30. ^ Magid, Jacob (October 26, 2020). "At Brooklyn Trump rally, Orthodox anger at mayor and governor take center stage". Times of Israel. Retrieved January 16, 2021.
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  36. ^ Vaillancourt, William (January 21, 2022). "Giuliani Pal Fesses Up to Scheme to Seat Trump Electors". The Daily Beast. Retrieved September 12, 2022.
  37. ^ Griffing, Alex (January 21, 2022). "Boris Epshteyn Says Effort to Swap in Pro-Trump Electors Was 'Done Under the Leadership of Rudy Giuliani'". Mediaite. Retrieved September 12, 2022.
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  43. ^ Randazzo, Ryan (August 10, 2023). "Trump adviser groped 2 women in 2021 at Scottsdale club, one tells police". Arizona Republic. Retrieved August 10, 2023.
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