Melania’s Spokeswoman Fires Back at CNN in Scathing Op-Ed
America's first lady 'deserves honest reporting and media coverage,' says Stephanie Grisham
First lady Melania Trump’s spokeswoman blasted CNN and other mainstream media outlets on Monday for the “absurdity” that “abounds” in their coverage and said the first lady “deserves honest reporting and media coverage.”
Melania Trump gave an interview that aired last Wednesday on Fox News’ “Hannity.”
During that interview, she said the “hardest” thing for her to endure during her time as first lady has been “the opportunists who are using my name or my family name to advance themselves, from comedians to journalists to performers [to] book writers.”
Hannity asked her if that hurt.
“It doesn’t hurt. The problem is they’re writing the history and it’s not correct,” Melania Trump replied. “They like to focus on the gossip, and I would like [them] to focus on the substance and what we do — not just about nonsense.”
The first lady also said, “I do what I think is right. I know I will get the criticism from the public or from the media, but I will do what is right and what I feel is right for the country and for the people.”
As might be expected, the media mocked Melania Trump for criticizing the overwhelmingly negative coverage of her and her family.
CNN contributor Kate Anderson Brower, in particular, wrote an op-ed on Saturday titled, “Melania shows she’s a Trump through and through.”
Brower has written books about first ladies and the White House; she claimed the interview on “Hannity” proved that Melania Trump “doesn’t understand what it means to be first lady.”
“Is her family’s legacy the thing that worries her most? After all the pain she has witnessed as first lady, from meeting with a survivor of the Parkland, Florida, high school shooting to visiting with children separated from their parents at the border, has the media really been the most difficult part of her job?” Brower wondered.
“If so, that is a big problem.”
Brower thought the “Hannity” interview “was a lost opportunity to put attention on the families of struggling Americans she’s met in her role as first lady” and to promote her “Be Best” campaign fighting against bullying.
Instead, Brower said the interview was a “pity party.”
But Stephanie Grisham, Melania Trump’s deputy chief of staff for communications, published her own op-ed on CNN on Monday — and rebutted Brower’s complaints. She also slammed the media at large for their unfair coverage of the first lady.
“CNN has a dedicated reporter who covers Mrs. Trump. But the media consistently ignores the first lady’s work on behalf of the people of this country, and children in particular, in favor of more trivial matters,” Grisham wrote.
“Of course, absurdity abounds in the media’s coverage of our first lady. Reports focus on the trivial and superficial, rather than the deeper issues facing our country that she has tirelessly worked to address,” Grisham added.
Grisham listed Melania Trump’s visits to several national and international hospitals, children in immigration centers, hurricane-ravaged states, families of shooting victims, law enforcement officers and their families — and more.
She accused the media of glossing over or ignoring the first lady’s work, visits and Be Best campaign in favor of the “trivial.”
“Last year, when Mrs. Trump traveled to Texas to comfort and support the people affected by hurricanes, the media focused on the pair of heels she wore to board Air Force One,” Grisham noted.
“When she announced ‘Be Best,’ her campaign to help children all over the world, the media criticized her for focusing on the importance of safe and responsible behavior online, presumably because they disagree with her husband’s use of Twitter,” Grisham added.
Grisham also slammed the media for widely mocking Melania Trump’s red Christmas trees as part of the White House’s holiday decor this year, noting that the same people also ridiculed her white Christmas trees last year.
“The Christmas decorations were mocked last year, and no one is surprised that she is being criticized for them again this year,” Grisham said.
It’s nothing new for the first lady to be “attacked” for her “honest answers” during her rare sit-down interviews, Grisham lamented.
“The simple fact is that Mrs. Trump deserves honest reporting and media coverage that focuses on the substance of her message: the importance of helping children grow up to be happy, healthy and socially responsible adults,” Grisham argued.
“The media also has the opportunity and responsibility to report fairly, accurately and without bias,” Grisham added. “In many ways, they are failing to measure up to this responsibility. This failure must be addressed.”
Grisham said she hopes “the media will eventually learn to celebrate a woman who, through all the noise, is able to hold steadfast to her mission and stay true to herself.”
The responsibilities of being a first lady are “not lost” on Melania Trump and “her strength, individuality and integrity should be celebrated,” Grisham said.
Grisham concluded that she hopes “the media will eventually learn to celebrate a woman who, through all the noise, is able to hold steadfast to her mission and stay true to herself.”
“Regardless, Melania Trump is proud to be the first lady of the United States and is proud to represent the American people.”
Check out the first lady’s interview with “Hannity” in the video below: