Nearly two months into her husband’s presidency, Melania Trump is finally coming into her own as a beloved first lady, according to a report from Daily Mail on Sunday which said that her approval ratings have “soared from 36 percent to 52 percent.”
A well-received speech she gave on Wednesday to “high-powered women” in honor of International Women’s Day marked the first lady’s “coming out,” said the report, noting that Mrs. Trump is spending more time in Washington now after spending the first weeks of her husband’s presidency “hunkered down at the family’s midtown Manhattan penthouse.”
Data from a new CNN/ORC poll conducted March 1-4 revealed that 52 percent of Americans are favorable towards Melania, which is up from the 36 percent approval rating she received in the early weeks of 2017. The data was collected before she hosted her International Women’s Day luncheon, which was the first event she has hosted on her own in her new role as the first lady.
Attending the luncheon were approximately 50 women, “including ambassadors, Cabinet members, at least one U.S. senator, and stepdaughter Ivanka Trump.”
“I will work alongside you in ensuring that the gender of one’s birth does not determine one’s treatment in society,” she reportedly told guests. She also asked for suggestions regarding ways to empower women and girls worldwide.
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The first lady has been busy in the past few weeks as she helped to plan the couple’s first big White House social event, an annual black-tie dinner for the nation’s governors. The next day she traveled to George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate in Virginia, where she was hosted by governors’ spouses, according to the report.
Mrs. Trump, who will celebrate her 47th birthday next month, has been mastering the learning curve of dealing with political protocol after being admonished for “not being at the White House to greet the Japanese prime minister’s wife.” She made up for that gaffe by taking Shinzo Abe’s wife, Akie, to tour a Japanese garden.
She has also been appearing at her husband’s side as he signs legislation and executive orders and accompanied him to the Capitol where he made his first address to Congress. “We see her physical presence,” said Jean Harris, professor of political science and women’s studies at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania.
The Trumps’ decision to have Melania and their son continue living at Trump Tower until 10-year-old son Barron finishes the school year has made her transition more difficult, especially considering that the couple had never been involved in politics before moving into the White House. “She’s not expected to live full time at the White House for at least several more months, leaving Trump largely on his own and without a traditional source of moral support,” according to the report.
It’s also taken her more time to staff the East Wing of the White House, which is where the first lady’s office is based. At this point, she has only hired a social secretary and a chief of staff and has been criticized by members of Congress, who have had to wait for more than six weeks until the White House Visitors Office re-opened for White House tours. The tours resumed earlier this week.
Kate Andersen Brower, the author of “First Women,” stated that Mrs. Trump is “the polar opposite” of her husband when it comes to being in the spotlight. “I think most people find it endearing that she doesn’t crave the spotlight in a way that he clearly does,” Brower observed.
H/T: Daily Mail
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