Melania’s former friend reveals unknown secrets about the Trump family

When an election is fully underway, it’s not uncommon for former friends and associates of the candidates to come out of the woodwork. In the case of the Trump family, a former friend and adviser to Melania Trump, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, has published a tell-all book about her relationship with the first lady. And yep, she’s dropping some bombshells. 

But first, a little background. Winston Wolkoff is a fixture in New York City’s high society circles, having worked at auction house Sotheby’s as a receptionist and then later for Vogue as a PR person. At Vogue, she was promoted to director of special events and helped organize events like the Met Gala and other high profile parties, according to Town & Country. Winston Wolkoff has been friends with Melania, a former model, for over a decade, and when Donald Trump ran for president, she worked on the 2016 campaign and was brought on to “produce” his January 2017 inauguration ceremony, according to Good Morning America. Winston Wolkoff remained friends with Melania up until February 2018, which is when reports surfaced that she had profited handsomely from producing the inauguration, despite Trump’s inaugural committee’s promises of frugality, according to The New York Times. Wolkoff’s professional relationship with the White House was terminated, and in a statement obtained by The New York Times, she claimed that she was “thrown under the bus.”  

Cut to August 2020, and the former adviser is telling her version of the truth about Melania and the Trump family. Here some juicy picks from Winston Wolkoff’s book, Melania & Me: The Rise and Fall of My Friendship with the First Lady.

How Melania Trump allegedly reacted to the 'Access Hollywood' tape

One allegation from Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s book concerns Melania Trump’s alleged reaction to the infamous Access Hollywood tape that leaked in 2016. To recap, Trump was caught on hit mic in 2005, saying lewd and offensive comments about women. “Just kiss. I don’t even wait,” he told the outlet’s then-reporter, Billy Bush, according to NBC News. “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em by the p***y.”

Winston Wolkoff claimed she and Melania had lunch the day the tape was released and recounted the experience to ABC News‘ Linsey Davis. “Now, if any other human being or any other one of my friends, I would have expected to see them in tears, right? She was smiling as if nothing happened,” she alleged. “And I swear to you, I had like a glitch in my brain, ’cause I was like — is this really happening at this moment, is it surreal that her husband just came out and said these horrible things?” She claimed that instead, they laughed at the notion of the words “p***y and president” in the same sentence. 

In another part of the book, Winston Wolkoff alleged that Melania said disparaging things about Donald’s older children, notably Ivanka. Winston Wolkoff claimed that Melania called Ivanka “Princess” and that they were often at odds over issues as small as where to set up offices, per an excerpt published in New York Magazine‘s Intelligencer. Ivanka’s team declined to give a comment to ABC News.

Stephanie Winston Wolkoff isn't done with the Trumps

In addition to her stories about Melania Trump’s relationship with her stepkids and husband, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s book also includes allegations that she is working with investigators to dig into President Donald Trump’s inaugural committee’s activities and spending. White House reps told ABC News that the White House “disagrees with [her] description of this historic event” and accused Melania’s former friend of trying to “profit off lies and mischaracterizations meant to harm the First Family.”

Winston Wolkoff isn’t backing down though, saying in her interview with ABC News about the Trump presidency, “It was amateur hour then, and it’s amateur hour now, and I think it’s really frightening for our country. Everyone does need to know what … this presidency is doing and what this propaganda machine behind this man at the White House is doing.” 

It’s probably safe to say that the American people (and the Trump family) haven’t heard the last of Melania’s former friend. 

Melania Trump's chief of staff hits back

Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s book, Melania & Me: The Rise and Fall of My Friendship with the First Lady is slated for a Sept. 1, 2020, release. And even before it hit the shelves, Melania’s chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, released a statement bashing Winston Wolkoff and her tell-all. There’s a chance Grisham might have been particularly upset by reports that Winston Wolkoff recorded conversations with Melania Trump to back up her claims. However, the former Vogue employee wouldn’t confirm or deny the alleged secret recordings in an August 2020 interview with ABC News

“Anybody who secretly tapes their self-described best friend is by definition, dishonest,” Grisham said about the work, per People. “The book is not only full of mistruths and paranoia, it is based on some imagined need for revenge. Wolkoff builds herself up while belittling and blaming everyone she worked with, yet she still managed to be the victim. Sadly, this is a deeply insecure woman whose need to be relevant defies logic.”

The Trump team has already denied any allegations made in the book, yet that hasn’t stopped these anecdotes from gaining media attention. 

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