First lady Melania Trump is eager for her husband, President Donald Trump, to leave office so that she can divorce him, and until then, deliberately chooses to “punish” the president with certain fashion choices, according to former White House aide to the president Omarosa Manigault Newman.
Manigault Newman made the claim in her new book, Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House, a damning tome that accuses the president of using racial slurs and having impaired mental acuity, among other salacious claims.
“In my opinion, Melania is counting every minute until he is out of office and she can divorce him,” Manigault Newman wrote.
A rift between the president and first lady was also part of another damaging book released this year, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump While House by Michael Wolff, which claimed the Trumps did not share a bedroom.
The White House has denounced Manigault Newman's claims. She was fired in December by White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.
Manigault Newman also suggested that the first lady had weaponized her style choices. She pointed to the “Gucci ‘pussy bow’ pink blouse” the first lady wore to one of the presidential debates in 2016 after an infamous Access Hollywood tape came out in which the president bragged about sexually assaulting women. She also cited the “I Really Don’t Really Care. Do U?” jacket the first lady donned during her trip to a Texas border facility in June after the administration had faced blowback for its “zero-tolerance” immigration policy.
“Taken as a whole, all of her style rebellions have served the same purpose,” Manigault Newman wrote, “and not only misdirection and distraction—strategies her husband knows all too well. I believe Melania uses style to punish her husband.”
The first lady was "disappointed" Manigault Newman was "lashing out" at the president, she said through her spokesperson Stephanie Grisham.
"Mrs. Trump rarely, if ever, interacted with Omarosa. It’s disappointing to her that she is lashing out and retaliating in such a self-serving way, especially after all the opportunities given to her by the president," Grisham told Newsweek.
Manigault Newman wrote that the first lady was “forced” to visit the facility to “mop up her husband’s mess,” and that the message on the jacket was directed at her husband.
“She wore that jacked to hurt Trump, setting off a controversy that he would have to fix, prolonging the conversation about the administration’s insensitivity, ruining the trip itself, and trying to make sure that no one asked her to do something like that again,” Manigault Newman claimed in her book.
The president responded to coverage of the jacket by claiming his wife was attacking the “Fake News Media.”
“I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?” written on the back of Melania’s jacket, refers to the Fake News Media. Melania has learned how dishonest they are, and she truly no longer cares!” Trump tweeted.
Grisham said at the time that the first lady had made the decision to visit the border facility. Before the visit, there had been intense speculation about the first lady and her health, as she had not made any public appearances for almost a month following a medical procedure in May.
Donald Trump responded Monday with several tweets, including one in which he describes Manigault Newman as “wacky.”
“Wacky Omarosa already has a fully signed Non-Disclosure Agreement! ” the president said.
Manigault Newman’s book comes out Tuesday.
This story has been updated to include a further tweet from the President Trump and a statement from the first lady's spokesperson.