Melania Trump will speak at the Republican national convention on Tuesday night, in the shadow of an extraordinary report that she was taped making derogatory comments about her husband’s adult children and even Donald Trump himself.
On Monday the media reporter Yashar Ali cited unnamed sources in reporting that Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former friend and adviser, “taped the first lady” and plans to share the remarks in her book.
They include “harsh comments about Ivanka Trump, the president’s elder daughter and a senior adviser”, Ali wrote.
The US continues to digest the publication, by the Washington Post, of tapes of Donald Trump’s older sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, calling the president “cruel” and criticizing his character and behavior.
Those tapes were made surreptitiously but legally by Mary L Trump, the president’s niece, who released a bestselling book in July, Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.
Simon & Schuster published Mary Trump’s book and one by John Bolton, Trump’s former national security adviser. It will publish Melania & Me.
In publicity material, the publisher says Wolkoff, a longterm friend of Melania Trump “was recruited to help produce the 58th presidential inauguration and to become the first lady’s trusted adviser”.
“…Then it all fell apart when she was made the scapegoat for inauguration finance irregularities. Melania could have defended her innocent friend and confidant, but she stood by her man, knowing full well who was really to blame. The betrayal nearly destroyed Wolkoff.”
Fundraising for Trump’s inauguration has been the subject of investigations by the special counsel and authorities in New York, New Jersey and the District of Columbia, which alleged fundraising was used to enrich Trump family members.
The White House did not immediately comment on news of Wolkoff’s book but last weekend, responding to news of his sister’s comments, the president indicated he has grown used to such news.
Evidently, publishing companies do. Melania & Me is the latest in a stream of tell-alls due out before the election in November. Former personal lawyer Michael Cohen and former campaign aide Rick Gates – both convicted in cases arising from the work of special counsel Robert Mueller, Gates a figure in the inauguration case – have books on the way. So does former Mueller prosecutor Andrew Weissmann.
HR McMaster, national security adviser before Bolton, has a memoir coming out this month. The Watergate reporter Bob Woodward also has a new Trump book coming.
Melania has been the subject of previous books including Free, Melania by Kate Bennett and Melania: The Art of Her Deal by Mary Jordan.
From Wolkoff, Simon & Schuster promises a “candid and emotional memoir” which will answer questions about many of the most scandalous and salacious moments of the Trump presidency. Among them: “How did Melania react to the Access Hollywood tape” – in which Donald Trump infamously boasted of grabbing women “by the p—y” – “and her husband’s affair with Stormy Daniels”, which Trump denies but which remains a cause of legal trouble and political jeopardy.
“Does she get along well with Ivanka?” the publisher asks. “Why did she wear that jacket with ‘I really don’t care, do u?’ printed on the back? Is Melania happy being first lady?
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