President Donald Trump’s alleged affair with a pornographic actress — and his involvement in the attempts to cover it up — have been making headlines all year. But in an interview with ABC News, Melania Trump dismissed the allegations and defended her husband, saying she has “much more important things” to focus on.
“It is not concern and focus of mine,” she said. “I’m a mother and a first lady, and I have much more important things to think about and to do. I know people like to speculate and media like to speculate about our marriage.”
In a taped interview with ABC that aired Friday morning, the intensely private first lady spoke about her marriage to President Donald Trump, telling reporter Tom Llamas that “we are fine” and brushing aside media coverage of his infidelities as mere “gossip.”
When asked by Llamas if she’s been hurt by the allegations made against her husband, Trump took a moment before answering, “It’s not always pleasant, of course, but I know what is right and what is wrong and what is true or not true.”
EXCLUSIVE: First lady Melania Trump brushes aside allegations of her husband's infidelity.— ABC News (@ABC) October 12, 2018
“I'm a mother and a first lady, and I have much more important things to think about and to do," she tells @ABC. https://t.co/VILtmVBA2E pic.twitter.com/MSLsRksVu8
Earlier this year, reports came out that Donald Trump had ordered his then-lawyer Michael Cohen to pay porn actress Stormy Daniels $130,000 to keep her from discussing their alleged affair publicly ahead of the 2016 election. That affair — and another alleged relationship with Karen McDougal — reportedly began in 2006, right after Melania had given birth to the Trumps’ son Barron.
Last week, a report by the Wall Street Journal found that Trump told Cohen in February to get a restraining order against Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, to stop her from speaking out.
The president has repeatedly denied the affair, but later admitted to reimbursing Cohen the sum he paid to Daniels.
During the interview, Melania Trump also confirmed she never spoke to Rudy Giuliani about the alleged affair between her husband and the former porn star. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, had come out in June saying Melania Trump “believes her husband, and she knows it’s untrue” about their relationship.
When asked about why Giuliani made those claims, Melania Trump said, “I don’t know. You need to ask him.”
“I’m the most bullied person” in the world
Melania Trump also told Llamas she receives a lot of criticism online, which is why she has decided to focus her efforts on social media and online behavior while in the White House.
“I could say I’m the most bullied person on the world,” she said, later correcting her statement to say that she might be only one of them. “If you really see what people are saying about me.”
EXCLUSIVE: First lady Melania Trump says her “Be Best” policy platform targeting online bullies is personal. “I could say that I’m the most bullied person in the world,” she tells ABC. https://t.co/RBrs4d6gQH pic.twitter.com/r8CNJeyFQa— ABC News (@ABC) October 12, 2018
The first lady’s “Be Best” initiative, a three-pronged platform that aims to educate children on social-emotional behavior and tackle opioid abuse in the US, launched in May. In July, she visited a children’s hospital in Nashville and said she hopes the campaign inspires children to be their best selves.
“I want to help children be best in everything that they do,” Trump said in July. “To be best at whatever your passion is, where you’re focused, everything in life, really. And be best with each other, to be kind.”