Donald Trump on Wednesday blasted the media for speculating about the whereabouts, and condition, of first lady Melania Trump, insisting that she’s “doing really well” despite weeks of absence from the public eye.
In a mid-morning tweet, the president responded to the ongoing controversy about Melania’s absence, accusing the “fake news” of propagating a false narrative about the first lady and her disappearance.
“The Fake News Media has been so unfair, and vicious, to my wife and our great First Lady, Melania. During her recovery from surgery they reported everything from near death, to facelift, to left the W.H. (and me) for N.Y. or Virginia, to abuse. All Fake, she is doing really well!”
Prior to this week, neither hide nor hair of Melania had been seen since May 6. On May 10, she was admitted to Walter Reed Army Medical Center for what the White House described as a minor kidney procedure, one which is usually done outpatient.
But as her absence continued, the media began speculating about the reason for her absence. Some suggested that her medical problem was more serious than the White House had been letting on. The Chicago Tribune suggested, satirically of course, that Mrs. Trump had been smuggled out of the White House to live with the Obamas. Rolling Stone writer Jamil Smith suggested, not satirically, that Melania was hiding because she was a victim of domestic abuse, as reported by the Inquisitr.
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) June 6, 2018
In fact, on Monday Mrs. Trump did appear in public – sort of – for the first time since days before her hospitalization. At a White House reception honoring Gold Star families, which was closed to the public, Mrs. Trump tweeted photos, including at least one of herself in the room.
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) June 5, 2018
And on Wednesday afternoon, Mrs. Trump finally appeared at an event that was open to the media.
As NBC News reports, the first lady appeared, seated next to her husband, at FEMA headquarters in Washington for a briefing in advance of the 2018 hurricane season.
Perhaps strangely, the president suggested that something – it’s not clear what – had been bedeviling the first lady during her weeks-long absence.
“She went through a little rough patch but she’s doing great. We’re very proud of her, she’s done a fantastic job as first lady.”
Mrs. Trump did not speak at Wednesday’s meeting.
Despite appearing in public on Wednesday, Mrs. Trump will still be relatively absent for the foreseeable future, as she’s already announced that she won’t be joining her husband at several high-profile events scheduled for this summer.