- Ivanka Trump was involved in a power struggle with First Lady Melania Trump in the early days of the Trump administration, according to a new book.
- While Melania stayed in NYC to renegotiate her prenup with the president, Ivanka Trump sought to move her offices into the East Wing, the residence of the First Lady, according to the excerpt.
- While Melania Trump has kept a relatively low profile during her husband’s presidency, Ivanka Trump has played a prominent role in her father’s administration.
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Ivanka Trump, in an abortive bid for power in the early days of her father’s presidency, sought to rename the First Lady’s office in the White House, the “First Family’s office,” but Melania Trump blocked the move.
New details about the rivalry between the two members of the president’s family emerged on Saturday in excerpts from a new book Art of her Deal: The Untold Story of Melania Trump by Mary Jordan, published in the Washington Post.
It describes how Donald Trump was taken totally by surprise by his victory over Hillary Clinton in 2016.
He had even organized to travel to one of his resorts in Scotland immediately after election night because he didn’t want to watch Clinton “bask in her success.”
But when he won, the Trump’s had to adjust to their new roles quickly, and the president moved from his luxury penthouse in Trump Tower in New York City to the White House to begin his term in office.
Melania Trump resisted making the move immediately, though, according to the excerpt. She remained in Trump Tower with their son, Barron, while she renegotiated her prenuptial agreement with her husband.
But in Melania’s absence Ivanka Trump, the president’s eldest daughter, was jostling for influence. She sought to take over office space in the East Wing, the part of the White House reserved for the First Lady, according to the new book.
Ivanka, who was appointed as an adviser in her father’s administration, even reportedly sought to rename the office through which the First Lady conducts her public duties to the “First Family Office,” but Melania blocked it.
“With Melania away, Ivanka used the private theater, with its plush red seats, and enjoyed other White House perks. Some said she treated the private residence as if it were her own home,” Jordan writes. “Melania did not like it. When she and Barron finally moved in, she put an end to the “revolving door” by enforcing firm boundaries.”
White House spokesman Judd Deere pushed back against the claims.
“This is totally false. The media is once again running untrue information from anonymous sources and not once did anyone fact check this with the White House or Ivanka Trump,” he told Business Insider.
A spokesperson for Simon and Schuster, the book’s publisher, told the Associated Press in April that while working for The Washington Post, Jordan had interviewed Melania Trump but that “the White House declined her request to speak with her for the book or to respond to written questions.”
Eventually, Ivanka remained in the West Wing of the White House, where she continues to hold the title of adviser in the administration, works on entrepreneurship initiatives, and is often deployed to soften her father’s image’s presidency.
Melania Trump has led an anti-online bullying campaign during her time as first lady, but has played a less public role than some of her predecessors in the position.