It’s safe to say things have deteriorated between once-close Melania Trump and former White House advisor and Met Gala organizer Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, who went on to write tell-all book Melania and Me after their falling out and her exit from the East Wing. Wolkoff has since gone on to serve as something of a character witness for Melania for various outlets, including financier and fellow former Trump ally Anthony Scaramucci’s podcast Mooch FM. Both Wolkoff and Scaramucci once believed the Trump family’s power could be harnessed for good, and both have since come to the conclusion that their willingness to cross moral lines makes that impossible. They also both happen to agree on the clear future of the Trump family: Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump, who Wolkoff says the former President would choose over anyone else in his life without hesitation — including Melania.
While Wolkoff’s book certainly pulls back the curtain on former close friend Melania, she says she equally hoped the tell-all would shine a light on Ivanka’s activities, which she views no less harshly. Even though her friendship with Melania is no more, her irritation shines through whenever she discusses Ivanka’s perceived attempts to undermine Melania in the White House.
“One of the reasons why I wrote Melania and Me in the way that I wrote it… was to highlight the way that Ivanka would usurp Melania and all the traditions of the White House and didn’t care about any rules and didn’t care about anyone else,” she adds. “And that to me was just as important, getting that out to the world, to the country, to know who Ivanka was, more than even Melania.”
While she believes Melania was fully on board with and complicit in Donald’s aims during his presidency, it’s Ivanka’s potential political future she fears, having seen the way Donald prizes her as the family’s next star.
“She’s Donald in a suit,” Wolkoff says. “She is Donald’s one ace in the hole. And if Donald had to choose between anyone, it would be Ivanka.”
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There’s certainly no lost love between Wolkoff and the Trump family, but the bitterness remains. Melania’s former friend had wanted badly to believe in the Trump administration: “Many people have criticized me for taking way too long to realize that Melania wasn’t really my friend,” she admits. “I think I held on to the friendship because I wanted to believe that she would come out and say something, anything in my defense…they do not do that.”
Melania has dismissed Wolkoff’s book as “salacious claims made by a former contractor who advised my office.” An investigation into possible misuse of 2017 inauguration funds, in which Wolkoff has served as a key witness against the Trump family, is ongoing.
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