Ever since first lady Melania Trump was spotted frowning solemnly at her husband's inauguration last year, people have wondered if she was unhappy about her husband's presidency. Now, ousted White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman is claiming that may not be too far from the truth. In her new book Newman alleges that President Trump would try to deport Melania if she ever tried to leave him while he was in office. Bustle has reached out to both the White House and the office of the first lady for comment.
According to multiple media reports, Newman hypothesized in her book Unhinged: An Insider's Account of the Trump White House that Trump is so "vindictive" he would seek to invalidate Melania's U.S. citizenship and have her deported back to Slovenia if she ever left him during his presidency. "Since Donald is fully aware of however she acquired her permanent citizenship, he could, if there were anything fishy around it, expose the methods and somehow invalidate it," Newman wrote, according to the Mercury News. "He is a vindictive man, and I would not put anything past him."
Newman reportedly goes on to allege that "Trumpworld intimates" repeatedly questioned how Melania obtained citizenship through the so-called "Einstein visa" program back in 2006. The first lady is reported to have secured a green card in 2001 through the EB-1, or "Einstein Visa," program, which traditionally distributes visas to individuals who demonstrate "extraordinary ability." But Newman has alleged there are whispers in the White House that Trump worked to "secure or expedite" Melania's visa, and thus knows how it might be invalidated.
Earlier this year it was reported that the Trump administration had created a new office within the Department of Homeland Security, which had been tasked with identifying individuals who falsified information on their citizenship applications and then revoking their citizenship.
"If Melania were to try to pull the ultimate humiliation and leave him while he's in office, he would find a way to punish her," Newman alleged in her book. "This is a man who has said he could pardon himself from the Mueller investigation. Why not pardon himself over an alleged visa payoff?"
Both the White House and the Office of the First Lady have, however, pushed back on Newman's allegations. "It's disappointing to [the first lady] that [Newman] is lashing out and retaliating in such a self-serving way, especially after all the opportunities given to her by the president," Stephanie Grisham, the first lady's director of communications, told the Washington Examiner last week. Grisham also claimed that Melania and Newman "rarely, if ever, interacted."
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders characterized Newman's book as being "riddled with lies and false accusations" in a statement released last week. She also described Newman as "a disgruntled former White House employee" and alleged she was "trying to profit off these false attacks."
But is Melania even looking to leave Trump? Newman reportedly thinks so, despite the White House's repeated claims that all is well. She wrote in her book, according to The Washington Examiner, "In my opinion, Melania is counting every minute until he is out of office and she can divorce him."