For the first months of Donald Trump’s presidency, his wife Melania has largely kept out of the public eye, so much so that her notable absence from the duties of a modern first lady has prompted speculation regarding both her marriage and her state of mind.
As she and Barron make their move to D.C. this summer, many are left wondering what, if anything, we can expect to see change about her position in the Trump administration.
MELANIA WILL PROBABLY MAKE A FEW NEW HIRES IN THE EAST WING.
As of right now, Melania’s staff consists of just a handful of advisers: Chief of Staff Lindsay Reynolds, Social Secretary Anna Cristina Niceta Lloyd, Senior Adviser Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, and Communications Director Stephanie Grisham. There are no requirements for how many federal employees should operate out of the East Wing of the White House, but given the precedent set by Michelle Obama, who had a staff of 24, Laura Bush who had a team of 18, and Hillary Clinton, who had 19, we can expect Melania to hire few more people.
AND SHE COULD INFLUENCE WHO WORKS FOR HER HUSBAND.
Much like the president, Melania is concerned about the chaotic state in which the White House has found itself in recent weeks. “She was really concerned that Spicer was not doing a good job, that they were not proactive in defending the president,” a source told Politico. “The leaks bother her. She believes a lot of people are more interested in serving themselves than him.”
Loyalty and the opinions of those who have known him longest are of utmost importance to President Trump, and the opinions of another close family member could sway his decisions about who stays and who goes.
SHE’LL CONTINUE TO PUT HER TOUCH ON THE WHITE HOUSE DECOR.
After the initial announcement that Tham Kannalikham would serve as White House Decorator, we’ve heard very little about the changes Melania is making to the first family’s residence.
Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, senior advisor to the first lady, told WWD, “Mrs. Trump has a deep appreciation for the historical aspects of the White House and with Tham’s traditional design and expertise, they are focusing on a seamless integration of elegance and comfort into where the President, the First Lady, and [their son] Barron will be spending their family time and calling their home.”
One can imagine she’ll want to show off the space once she settles in.
SHE WANTS TO SERVE THE TRADITIONAL ROLE OF FIRST HOSTESS.
Jackie Kennedy’s influence on Melania appears to extend beyond the sartorial. According to the New York Daily News, the first lady hopes to focus on entertaining once she arrives in D.C. She sees event planning (as well as public-facing programs like reopening the White House for tours) as a way she can make her mark.
Melania Continues to Channel Jackie Kennedy
REPORTS ALSO SUGGEST THAT THE MOVE COULD COINCIDE WITH A SHIFT IN MELANIA’S PERSONAL AESTHETIC.
The Daily News also suggests that the first lady is changing her look. Not only is she lightening up her hair with balayage, but she’s also adapting her wardrobe to fit the D.C. scene.
“Herve Pierre did her inauguration dress and the two of them are huddling to do more elegant gowns for entertaining in the White House,” a source told the paper. “She wants her dresses modern, sleek, and form fitting.”
SHE COULD FOCUS IN ON A CAUSE.
During Trump’s presidential campaign, Melania announced that if she were to become first lady, she would focus on combatting and preventing cyberbullying.
“We have to find a better way to talk to each other, to disagree with each other, to respect each other,” she said, during a speech on the trail. “We must find better ways to honor and support the basic goodness of our children, especially in social media. It will be one of the main focuses of my work if I’m privileged enough to become your first lady.”
However, following Trump’s inauguration, Melania hasn’t made mention of her chosen cause. Perhaps once she moves to D.C. she will enthusiastically take on advocacy work in the field.
OR MAYBE NOT!
Melania has made it clear that motherhood is her top priority. She once said “I am a full-time mom; that is my first job. The most important job ever,” and nothing, not her husband’s presidency—not her role of first lady, and certainly not a move to the White House—is going to change that.
(via: Town and Country)