Melania Trump was ‘angry’ with Meadows and ‘wary’ of lawyers ahead of Jan. 6: Grisham
Editor’s note: Former Fox News personality Kimberly Guilfoyle is engaged to Donald Trump Jr. Their relationship was mischaracterized in an earlier version of this story.
Former first lady Melania Trump distrusted most of her husband’s inner circle ahead of the Jan. 6, 2021, riot on the Capitol, and was outright angry with chief of staff Mark Meadows, according to testimony from ex-White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham released Thursday.
Melania Trump was “wary” with the White House legal advisers — including Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell and Jenna Ellis — who were leading efforts to overturn the election, Grisham said in the newly released transcripts of her May depositions with the House committee investigating Jan. 6.
And she added that those misgivings extended to former President Trump’s son Donald Jr. and his fiancée Kimberly Guilfoyle, an adviser to the president, telling the panel that Melania Trump “never trusted that they were doing things in the best interest of their — Don Jr’s father.”
But the first lady was “very angry” at Meadows, both for his treatment of Grisham and for giving access to “people who were maybe harmful to the president, giving him bad advice,” according to Grisham.
“And Mrs. Trump never liked it when people would tell Trump what he wanted to hear rather than the truth or the reality of the situation, and she felt that Meadows was always just playing into his hand,” she added.
Grisham was among several members of the Trump administration who met with the Jan. 6 committee multiple times during its investigation.
Grisham also revealed that Trump and Meadows wanted to fire White House usher, Timothy Harleth, for being “disloyal” by secretly assisting with President Biden’s transition to the White House, but Melania Trump successfully urged them not to since there was only three weeks left before the inauguration, according to the interview.
Grisham said she also reached out to incoming first lady Jill Biden’s staff to offer her assistance in the transition.
Grisham’s account also detailed her frustrations with Melania Trump during the insurrection on the Capitol, saying she was “disappointed” with how Melania Trump failed to respond to the violent riots at the capitol.
“She had started to, in my opinion, drink somebody’s Kool-Aid that perhaps this election was stolen,” Grisham said.
While Grisham was watching the violence unfold at the Capitol, she said Melania Trump was busy with “a big photoshoot” with a new carpet in the White House residence.
Grisham texted the first lady to ask if she wanted to tweet that “there was no place for lawlessness and violence” during the riots, but Ms. Trump refused without explanation — at which point Grisham said she decided to resign.
“I just — I mean, I kind of was like just f— you. I mean, I’m sorry for the transcript person. But I was so, so disappointed in her,” she said. “I was more disappointed in her than I had ever, ever been, because she had a chance to take a real leadership role. And I know for a fact she was amazing at influencing her husband sometimes with these kind of things, you know.”
—Updated Friday at 1:02 p.m.
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