Melania Trump has been largely absent from the public's eye since news broke of Donald Trump's alleged infidelity with the former porn star, Stormy Daniels. Speculation from unconfirmed sources has risen of the couple's impending divorce since the scandal broke, as Melania was reportedly furious for allegedly being "blindsided" by a reported payout to the mistress prior to the election. However, with hours to go before the president's first State of the Union address (or SOTU), First Lady Trump took to Twitter and announced her plans to attend the event. She also revealed a guest list of over a dozen people who will be in attendance.
During a live CNN broadcast, Brooke Baldwin hosted a discussion about Melania Trump's recent noticeable absence in recent days, namely from the president's trip to Davos and her relatively low-profile. Baldwin said Melania's appearance at Tuesday's State of the Union address marks the first time the public sees her (excluding her recent "unannounced" trip to the Holocaust Museum in Washington) since she "ditched" Davos before heading off to Florida alone.
Two guests participated in the discussion about Melania Trump: White House reporter, Kate Bennett, and CNN contributor, Kate Andersen Brower. At issue was whether Melania's absence from media circles was due to her need for privacy or a sign of "displeasure" over the "very public" rumors about Donald Trump's alleged affair with Daniels.
As speculation stewed about whether Melania would support her husband at the SOTU, the first lady tweeted her plans to attend the event and host 15 guests. Among them are surviving parents of victims killed at the hands of the notorious MS-13 gang and an Immigration Enforcement Agent who was killed in the line of duty.While Melania has not been photographed in public with President Trump since New Year's Eve, she has still kept the public abreast of her official duties. Still, some suspect that her marriage to Donald Trump has been strained and she has been out of sight since the Wall Street Journal (via CNN) broke the report of Trump's alleged sexual relationship with Daniels that reportedly dates back to back to 2006. Bennett said the apparent change in her behavior "begs the question, 'What's up'?" She adds that the reined-in appearances "raise eyebrows" in the wake of headlines about the former porn star and an alleged $130,000 payout for her silence. Baldwin suggested that Melania Trump's sudden departure from her usual role in being present whenever the president attends high-profile events may not be all that unusual. "There are multiple examples of first ladies who have stood by their man at low points," Baldwin says. Brower says Melania's "silence has spoken a thousand words."
Brower emphasized that she is more interested in seeing if the president follows in the footsteps of his predecessors -- Republican and Democrat -- by praising the first lady's work. If not, it is "telling," according to Brower.