Amid an increasing number of reports of what appears to be a widening rift between First Lady Melania Trump and her husband Donald, the Trump administration is now putting pedal to the metal in a public relations campaign to deny those reports.
According to Politico:
A spokeswoman for Melania Trump lashed out at the “laundry list of salacious & flat-out false reporting” about the first lady on Friday as allegations of a past extramarital affair by President Donald Trump have grabbed headlines. It was unclear what specific report the first lady’s team was responding to. But several articles in recent days have linked her absence on the president’s overseas trip to the World Economic Forum in Switzerland to allegations that Donald Trump had sex with a former adult film actress in 2006 shortly after Melania Trump gave birth to their son, Barron.
Melania Trump’s spokesperson, communications director Stephanie Grisham, tweeted a rather intense denial of reports about Melania, without actually saying which reports were false. Grisham wrote, “The laundry list of salacious & flat-out false reporting about Mrs. Trump by tabloid publications & TV shows has seeped into ‘main stream media’ reporting. She is focused on her family & role as FLOTUS — not the unrealistic scenarios being peddled daily by the fake news.” Note the very Trump-like characteristics of Grisham’s tweet, including using quotation marks in describing the main stream media, which is likely an attempt to belittle the media, especially given that Grisham uses one of Trump’s favorite terms, “fake news”, in the next sentence. Grisham at least seems to have a bigger vocabulary than President Trump, however.
BREAKING:The laundry list of salacious & flat-out false reporting about Mrs. Trump by tabloid publications & TV shows has seeped into "main stream media" reporting. She is focused on her family & role as FLOTUS – not the unrealistic scenarios being peddled daily by the fake news.
— Stephanie Grisham (@StephGrisham45) January 26, 2018
It was Grisham who announced Melania Trump’s sudden change of plans not go to Switzerland with her husband for the World Economic Forum. Grisham had originally stated Melania would be going to Switzerland “in a show of support for her husband”, but then on the day of the Trumps’ wedding anniversary, Grisham suddenly announced that Melania Trump would now not be going, due to “scheduling and logistical issues”, according to CNN. Given that the trip would have been planned and scheduled long ago, it seemed to many that something other than “scheduling and logistical issues” was the true reason for Melania Trump’s absence.
Then today a report appeared in the Daily Mail saying that Melania Trump has started spending multiple nights in a Washington, D.C. hotel rather than staying in the White House, which seems like a pretty strong indication of marital discord.
According to the Daily Mail:
One well-placed source said: “Melania spends three to four days a week away from the White House and has stayed at a hotel in D.C. multiple times in January, often for days at a time. She also travels up to New York. She rarely comes into his West Wing office as other first ladies have done and her schedule is vague at best.”
Given the timing, it may be this report about Melania retreating to a hotel in Washington, D.C., that engendered Grisham’s response, although she does not specifically mention this report.
Grisham’s tone appears to be quite angry in the tweet. Grisham is Melania Trump’s spokesperson, but it is difficult to know if Melania Trump is similarly angry at the reports, or if it is only the Trump propaganda machine that is displeased.