US POLITICS

What are the 'Melania Trump tapes' and what could they mean for Donald?

Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s new book, Melania and Me: The Rise and Fall of My Friendship with the First Lady has just been published offering a biographical overview of the First Lady.

What are the 'Melania Trump tapes' and what could they mean for Donald?
Erin Scott / POOL EFE

A new book written by former best friend of the American First Lady Melania Trump, who later served as her personal adviser in the east wing of the White House, fuels speculation about the internal rivalries of the Trump family.

The author, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former Vogue employee, was one of Melania's best friends for 15 years. Trump fired her suddenly in 2018 after the press revealed the immense cost of Donald Trump's presidential inauguration ceremony in January 2017, co-hosted by Wolkoff.

The 351-page book, which currently ranks fourth on Amazon's bestseller list, is illustrated with photos of some text messages exchanged by the women, riddled with emojis sent by the first lady, and is titled "Melania and Me: The Rise and Fall Of My Friendship With the First Lady".

Melania's spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, said the book "just doesn't tell the truth."

Winston Wolkoff reproaches the first lady for not having defended her against accusations of abusive spending at the inauguration, and told CBS on Monday that he is collaborating with federal investigators on possible fraud committed on the occasion.

"Americans are very curious about their first lady, and since Melania is particularly cautious, they want to know more," said Katherine Jellison, a professor at Ohio University. "Stepmother-stepdaughter tensions have been deeply anchored in public opinion ... since Cinderella."

Republican National Convention where Trump will be formally nominated as candidateFirst Lady Melania Trump (R) waves next to US President Donald Trump as they leave after he delivered his acceptance speech for the Republican Party nomination for reelection during the final day of the Republican National Convention at the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on August 27, 2020. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP)

Impact on Donald Trump

Despite his popularity with his loyal fan base, the publication of the so-called “Melania Tapes” come at a key time in US politics with the presidential election looming in early November and with many US voters undecided if their vote with go to Democratic candidate Joe Biden or Trump. These embarrassing recordings involving Melanie will provide an unwanted distraction for the Trump campaign.