Several British newspapers, some of them more respectable than others, are reporting today that Melania Trump has moved out of the White House since Donald Trump’s affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels was exposed. Melania has reportedly been living in a hotel in Washington DC while Donald was in the White House, before visiting Florida while Donald was out of the country,. This paints their marriage as being in even more dire straits than previously believed, after Melania bailed on Donald’s trip to Switzerland at the last minute and went to Florida instead.
We wouldn’t normally be inclined to take papers like the Daily Mail or The Sun at their word. But in this instance their reporting on Melania moving into a hotel closely aligns with what’s already been confirmed about her sudden unwillingness to be anywhere near him. She lived in New York City for the first several months of Trump’s presidency, but she had the excuse that her son needed to finish the school year; this time around there’s no vagueness about why she’s not living with him.
So how does this impact Trump’s failing presidency, and the effort on the part of mainstream Americans to oust him? That’s the essential question from a political perspective. The First Lady moving out of the White House due to marital strife – even if it ends up being temporary – is unprecedented. It would be major headline news if not for Trump’s other exploding scandals. However, this does serve to change the equation on Trump’s presidency.
For one thing, Melania’s response to the Stormy Daniels affair keeps it at least marginally in the news. The longer that scandal holds the public’s interest, the more the media will keep digging into it. That increases the odds that Trump’s secret blackmail payment to Daniels, which was routed through a fake company, might unearth the methods by which money secretly flowed between Trump and Russia. Without saying a word, wittingly or unwittingly, Melania may be helping to expose the Trump-Russia scandal.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report