Is Melania Trump living separately? Michael Wolff book doubts she's residing at Mar-a-Lago
Michael Wolff's book ‘Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency’ claims that it's not clear how much time she is spending at the Florida resort
American author, essayist, journalist, and columnist Michael Wolff has a history of writing about former President Donald Trump. His last two books ‘Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House’ and ‘Siege: Trump under Fire’ were instant bestsellers. However, many have doubted the veracity of a number of claims in the books - or for that matter, the fact that he was “absolutely sure” Trump was having an affair with Nikki Haley. Now, in his upcoming book, he has claimed that Trump and his wife Melania Trump often eat alone at a "roped-off table" in the center of a Mar-a-Lago patio restaurant.
‘Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency’, Wolff’s third book on the Trump presidency, published by Henry Holt and Co, claims that the Trumps are "looked at, somewhat, like zoo animals. No, no, that's not right. They are like a newly married couple: every night is a wedding at which they spend their dinner greeting friends and wellwishers."
It’s been well-documented that since leaving the White House, Trump has lived at the Mar-a-Lago in Florida. Wolff claims in his upcoming book that he eats dinner most evenings on the patio, appearing just as it has filled, "at which point everyone stands and applauds.” The book seems to, however, question if Melania Trump resides with him at the Mar-a-Lago.
"For four years in the White House, it was never quite clear how much time she was spending at the White House or in a house in Maryland where she had settled her parents," Wolff writes. "Aides were careful not to closely inquire or openly wonder. Here too, in Mar-a-Lago, it was unclear."
An April CNN report quoted a source close to the Trumps who said, "She's not a presence at Mar-a-Lago at all. She's not mingling with people and rarely interacts with her husband's staff.” Three people familiar with Trump's dinnertime appearances told CNN that Melania appears "happy and relaxed" when they have seen her and that she “smiles and gives a wave as other dinner patrons rise from their seats to applaud the arrival of the former first couple to the dining area.”
Wolff’s book also claims that Trump is said to be asking passers-by for legal help. Wolff says that as of this past spring Trump had no "real" lawyers working with him, "going so far as to ask random visitors if they know any good ones". This comes in the wake of looming legal troubles for Trump, which includes a case against the Trump Organization and its chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg.
In January 2018, Politifact published a takedown of Wolff and ‘Fire and Fury’, noting myriad factual inaccuracies, and saying, “The fly-on-the-wall, you-are-here atmosphere that pervades ‘Fire and Fury’ will undoubtedly sell books,” but like other books before it, Wolff’s book “hardly seems a move in the right direction for well-sourced, evidence-based journalism. Instead, it’s a stew of mysteriously sourced dramatic scenes.”
The piece noted that the lack of sourcing is a problem because “it encourages people to suspend their critical thinking skills and follow their emotions into a pleasing narrative. That narrative might be true or it might not be, and it’s almost impossible to independently evaluate.”