Former first lady
Although the first lady kept her composure in public, she found ways to get back subtly, her former press aide and chief of staff Stephanie Grisham writes in her new book.
Her tactics included taking a separate motorcade to the
And when she made her entrance walking across the Capitol – under the glare of cameras and lights for the made-for-TV moment – Grisham selected a ‘handsome’ military aide, to accompany her.
Grisham writes that she selected the aide to help her boss, a former model, make it through the Capitol’s slick marble floors. ‘I laughed to myself because I’d seen the woman navigate dirt roads in her heels,’ she writes.
And when Trump tried to deny the affair, she was dismissive, in comments reported by Grisham, who also served as White House press secretary, although she never held a press briefing during her tenure.
‘Oh, please, are you kidding me?’ she said, according to Grisham. ‘I don’t believe any of that,’ she said, using an expletive.
Stephanie Grisham wrote that she hand-picked a handsome military aide to walk arm-and-arm with First Lady Melania Trump into the 2018 State of the Union as part of a campaign of revenge against President Donald Trump for his alleged affair with porn star Stormy Daniels
A Marine escorts Melania Trump to the the steps of the Capitol for her husband’s inauguration on January 20, 2017. Grisham also claims in her book that Melania didn’t believe any of her husband’s denials over the affair with Daniels
Grisham writes that Melania was angered when the stunning affair came to light in a Wall Street Journal story that first revealed Trump paid $130,000 in hush money payments.
Trump has repeatedly denied having an affair with Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford.
‘I felt that Mrs. Trump was basically unleashed,’ Grisham wrote.
On another occasion, Grisham helped write a statement for the first lady requesting privacy for her and her family. It was to say she intended to concentrate on being a mother, wife and first lady. According to Grisham, she had her aide remove the word ‘wife.’
In another of the book’s claims, this one with international intrigue, Russian President
‘OK, I’m going to act a little tougher with you for a few minutes. But it’s for the cameras, and after they leave, we’ll talk. You understand,’ Trump had told Putin when they met in June 2019 in Japan at the G20, Grisham recounted.
Melania poses with an airman during a tour of Joint Base Langley in Hampton, Virginia, on December 12, 2018
Daniels wrote in a 2018 book on her affair with the former president: ‘I lay there, annoyed that I was getting f***ed by a guy with Yeti pubes and a d*** like the mushroom character in Mario Kart
Stehanie Grisham wrote that she was told by Russia expert Fiona Hill that Russian President Vladimir Putin (center) had brought along an ‘attractive’ translator (left) to distract President Donald Trump (right) during their 2019 meeting
Grisham was a 2016 campaign aide who became First Lady Melania Trump’s spokeswoman, before being elevated to White House press secretary and communications director from July 2019 to April 2020.
She then returned to the East Wing to serve as the first lady’s spokesperson, again, and chief of staff.
The new book fills in some blanks about some of the most memorable moments from Trump’s one term.
I’ll Take Your Questions Now: What I saw at the Trump White House by Stephanie Grisham comes out on October 5
The Putin meeting in question came 11 months after the infamous Helsinki summit where Trump seemed to side with the Russian president over American intelligence agencies on whether Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election.
At the July 2018 meeting, Trump said Putin offered an ‘extremely strong and powerful’ denial.
At their 2019 meeting in Japan, Trump playfully scolded and wagged a finger at Putin in front of the cameras telling the Russian leader, ‘don’t meddle in the election,’ before they met behind closed doors for 90 minutes without journalists present.
According to The Times, Grisham conversed with Fiona Hill – the administration’s Russia expert turned impeachment 1.0 witness – who explained what Putin was doing to throw Trump off.
‘As the meeting began, Fiona Hill leaned over and asked me if I had noticed Putin’s translator, who was a very attractive brunette woman with long hair, a pretty face, and a wonderful figure,’ Grisham wrote. ‘She proceeded to tell me that she suspected the woman had been selected by Putin specifically to distract our president.’
A brunette woman with a blue dress can be seen following Putin into the room as the Russian leader greets the American delegation in Osaka.
Stephanie Grisham’s (left) ex-boyfriend Max Miller (right) was dubbed the ‘music man’ and would play showtunes like Memories from Cats to calm Trump down, Grisham wrote in her forthcoming book
Trump told Stephanie Grisham he didn’t have a ‘toad-shaped penis’ during Melania’s campaign of revenge over Stormy Daniels affair
The ex-press secretary also recalled how Trump insisted his penis was not shaped like a toadstool – responding to comments made by porn star Stormy Daniels.
Daniels wrote in a 2018 book on her affair with the former president: ‘I lay there, annoyed that I was getting f***ed by a guy with Yeti pubes and a d*** like the mushroom character in Mario Kart.’
Trump, upon hearing the allegation, called his press secretary from Air Force one to assure her his penis was neither small nor shaped like a toadstool, Grisham said.
Grisham also wrote that the former president once asked her former boyfriend, Miller, if she was good in bed.
The Daniels affair, Grisham wrote, ‘unleashed’ Melania’s vengeance as she began trying to contradict her husband in public.
The first lady told Grisham she didn’t believe her husband’s denials.
When Grisham drafted a tweet requesting privacy at the time of the affair, saying that Melania would focus on being a first lady, wife and mother, the first lady asked Grisham to scrub the tweet of the word ‘wife.’
Trump would cut his hair with giant scissors and tunes from his favorite musicals would calm him down
Grisham’s includes bizarre details about Trump’s behavior.
For instance, she claims he cuts his hair with a ‘huge pair of scissors that could probably cut a ribbon at an opening of one of his properties.’
She also writes that one of Trump’s aides – later revealed to be Grisham’s ex-boyfriend Max Miller, who is running for an Ohio Congressional seat and has been endorsed by Trump – would play him his favorite show tunes, including ‘Memory’ from Cats, to calm him down during tantrums.
Grisham described Trump’s temper as ‘terrifying.
Trump takes interest in a young press aide
Trump continued the womanizing behavior he was known for as a brash Manhattan real estate tycoon at the White House, Grisham revealed, writing that he repeatedly invited a young press aide to his Air Force One cabin – one time to look at her behind.
‘A couple of times I came close to telling Mrs. Trump about the president’s behavior. I thought that if she would say one little word to him about it, she could make it stop. But I could never bring myself to say anything,’ Grisham wrote.
Ultimately, she was too ‘chickens***’ to tell the then-first lady or ‘maybe it wasn’t my place or any of my business,’ she noted.
And she reveals Melania Trump may still not know about the former president’s behavior.
Grisham revealed in her book that the former president took ‘an unusual interest in a young, highly attractive press wrangler on my team.’
She details what she called inappropriate behavior by Trump and noted she tried to protect the staffer, who she doesn’t name.
Grisham writes Trump would tell her to put the staffer ‘on TV. Keep her happy, promote her.’
Trump, a former reality TV star, consider being on TV a great compliment and hired some of his staff and lawyers based on their appearances on Fox News.
Grisham also reveals that on one Air Force One trip Trump asked that the staffer be brought to his cabin, saying: ‘Let’s bring her up here and look at her ass.’
She said after that she tried to keep the staffer off trips: ‘I needed to protect her and, frankly, the president as well.’
Melania’s ‘I Really Don’t Care, Do U?’ jacket remains shrouded in mystery
Later that year, Melania Trump would seemingly go rogue again when she wore a ‘I Really Don’t Care, Do U?’ Zara jacket on a trip to tour a Texas Health and Human Services facility where migrant children were being housed.
A handful of the children at the McAllen facility had been separated from their families due to the controversial Trump immigration policy.
Grisham said the first lady had purchased the $39 jacket herself – and Melania Trump never gave a solid explanation as to why she wore it.
She told Grisham that it was just a jacket, when they were trying to figure out damage control on the plane.
Upon arrival at the White House, the president told an aide that the first lady needed to come to the Oval Office.
Grisham said it was the first time she’d seen the president summon the first lady that way in front of staff.
He yelled and asked ‘what the [expletive] they thought they were doing, The Post said.
Trump then devised a plan and tweeted out that the message was meant for the ‘Fake News.’
The first lady continued to repeat that story in interviews – but the real reason she wore the jacket remains unknown.
Melania Trump bought the $39 ‘I Really Don’t Care, Do U?’ jacket from Zara and wore it on a trip to see facilities that housed migrant children in June 2018. Grisham said it was the president who came up with the narrative that the message was meant for the ‘fake news’ media
Trump wanted Grisham to evict the press and reenact his perfect phone call
During her time serving as White House press secretary, Trump asked Grisham to find a way to remove the press from the White House premises.
He also wanted her to re-enact his ‘perfect’ phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for them.
She revealed that a trip to North Korea inspired Trump to ask her to find ways he could evict the White House press corps from the James Brady briefing room – a place he frequently held news conferences and bantered with reporters.
‘I researched different places we could put them other than the press briefing room. Each time the president asked me about my progress on the matter, I let him know I was still working on options,’ Grisham wrote.
Grisham, who was notable for never holding a press briefing as White House press secretary, explains she didn’t do so out of fears of what Trump would ask her to say at the podium.
Trump’s first press secretary, Sean Spicer, famously argued Trump’s inauguration crowd was ‘the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration’ – claim that did not match side-by-side photos of Trump’s inauguration with Barack Obama’s and destroyed his credibility.
‘I knew that sooner or later the president would want me to tell the public something that was not true or that would make me sound like a lunatic,’ she noted.
She also detailed one of Trump’s more outlandish requests – that she appear before the press corps and reenact his phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, which led to his first impeachment.
She managed to avoid doing it.
Trump, himself, famously like to reenact the call by reliving what he and Zelensky said, using different tones of voices to make his point.
Trump’s mysterious medical procedure at Walter Reed was likely a colonoscopy
While Grisham didn’t name the procedure, the former Trump aide strongly hinted that what Trump went to Walter Reed for in November 2019 was a colonoscopy – without anesthesia.
In the book, Grisham described it as a ‘very common procedure’ where ‘a patient is sometimes put under.’
The reason for the secrecy, Grisham explained, was that Trump didn’t want to hand over power to Vice President Mike Pence, even for a short amount of time, because it would be ‘showing weakness.’
He also didn’t want to be ‘the butt of the joke,’ she wrote, on late-night TV.
On the day of Trump’s Walter Reed trip, Grisham as press secretary told reporters that Trump had traveled to the Bethesda, Maryland facility for a physical.
‘Anticipating a very busy 2020, the President is taking advantage of a free weekend here in Washington, D.C., to begin portions of his routine annual physical exam at Walter Reed,’ Grisham said.
Grisham expressed that the concealment was regrettable.
She noted in the book that Trump could have used his influence to demystify colonoscopies – and thus save lives.
‘But as with COVID, he was too wrapped up in his own ego and his own delusions about his invincibility,’ Grisham said.
White House staff called Ivanka ‘the princess’ and she and Jared tried to push their way into a meeting with the Queen
Ivanka Trump (second right) and Jared Kushner (R) looks out of the window at Buckingham Palace during the visit of US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump on June 03, 2019 in London, England
Aides to former President
Grisham wrote that Melania Trump also referred to Ivanka by the name.
Ivanka, who served as an unpaid senior advisor to the president, regularly referred to him as ‘my father’ in meetings, she writes. Ivanka sometimes used the term in public.
Grisham terms her husband, former White House aide Jared Kushner, ‘the Slim Reaper’ for getting involved in projects designated for others, she wrote.
Grisham also wrote that the power couple tried to get themselves into a meeting with Queen Elizabeth II during Trump’s visit to the UK in 2019.
Only the president and first lady attended.
It would have been a ‘wild breach of protocol,’ according to The Post.
Kushner and Ivanka Trump did attend a state dinner.
Grisham writes that the situation was resolved when they couldn’t fit into a presidential helicopter.
Team Trump claims book is another ‘pitiful attempt to cash in on his strength’
‘This book is another pitiful attempt to cash in on the President’s strength and sell lies about the Trump family, said Trump spokeswoman Liz Harrington.
Harrington termed Grisham a ‘a disgruntled former employee’ – a term has applied in the past to aides who have written tell-alls.
She said the book’s publishers ‘should be ashamed of themselves for preying on desperate people who see the short term gain in writing a book full of falsehoods.’
Publisher Harper Collins calls the book ‘The most frank and intimate portrait of the Trump White House yet.’
Grisham was among the flurry of Trump officials who resigned from their posts on January 6, in the aftermath of the Capitol riot.
Trump went after Grisham personally in a statement released Tuesday morning.
‘Stephanie didn’t have what it takes and that was obvious from the beginning,’ Trump said. ‘She had big problems and we felt that she should work out those problems for herself. Now, like everyone else, she gets paid by a radical left-leaning publisher to say bad and untrue things.’
‘We and the MAGA movement are totally used to it. And someday in the not too distant future we will have our voice back and be treated fairly by the press,’ the ex-president added.