Ivana Trump, President Donald Trump's first wife, claimed she had a "direct number" to the White House, in an interview on Oct. 9 with ABC News to promote her new book, Raising Trump. Among other things, she claimed to speak with the the president every two weeks or so, and believes Melania doesn't enjoy her role in Washington D.C. With such bold statements coming from the president's ex-wife, Melania Trump responded after Ivana Trump calls herself "first lady."
The first lady's office released a statement refuting Ivana's claims, saying
"Mrs. Trump has made the White House a home for Barron and the President. She loves living in Washington, D.C. and is honored by her role as First Lady of the United States. She plans to use her title and role to help children, not sell books." The spokesperson from the office finished by saying, “There is clearly no substance to this statement from an ex, this is unfortunately only attention-seeking and self-serving noise."
In the interview with ABC, Ivana claimed to talk frequently with the president, but is hesitant to stir up jealousy among the president's actual wife and first lady, Melania. "I [don't] really want to call him there, because Melania is there," Ivana said. "And I don't want to cause any kind of jealousy or something like that, because I'm basically first Trump wife. OK? I'm first lady."
Ivana wasn't trying to cause jealousy, but if she was trying to stir up controversy, it worked. She went on to say that she does not envy the first lady's duties. As she mentioned in her recent interview with CBS Sunday Morning, President Trump offered her the role of American ambassador to the Czech Republic, which she refused because she "likes her freedom." She said, "I like to do what I want to do, go wherever I want to go."
On this interview, which aired on Oct. 8, Ivana spoke about her "perfect life" and how she advises and encourages the president to use Twitter, considering they speak "maybe once a week."
Melania's response statement was a direct rebuke to Ivana's comments about the first lady not enjoying her role. In the ABC interview, Ivana said, "I think for her to be in Washington must be terrible. It's better her than me. I would hate Washington."
She went on to say, "Would I straighten up the White House in 14 days? Absolutely. Can I give the speech for 45 minutes without [a] teleprompter? Absolutely. Can I read a contract? Can I negotiate? Can I entertain? Absolutely. But I would not really like to be there. I like my freedom."
Interestingly enough, it seems Ivana thinks she is more than capable of making substantial changes in the White House, but just chooses not to. This "feud" if you will, between the president's ex-wife and current wife, is unprecedented, considering President Trump is the second president in U.S history to be a divorcee, following former President Ronald Reagan. Trump is also the only president to have had multiple marriages (Ivana Zelnícková, Marla Maples, Melania Knauss.)
During the exclusive interview, Ivana also discussed her divorce with Donald Trump and the ways in which they became close again, considering they have three children together: Ivanka, Donald Jr., and Eric.
"Donald during the divorce was brutal. He took the divorce as a business deal and he cannot lose, he has to win," Trump said, mentioning that they are friends now.
This is the second interview Ivana has done leading up to the release of her new book, Raising Trump, which is expected to talk about her marriage, her children, and Donald Trump as a father.