Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Here’s why Melania Trump hasn’t moved into the White House yet


Shortly after the US election, it was revealed that Melania Trump would not be moving into the White House when her husband took office. The news prompted raised eyebrows in some quarters, as people wondered what the new First Lady’s reluctance to leave Manhattan could mean. 

The former Melanija Knavs has always stressed that her ten-year-old son Barron, her only child with Donald Trump, is her top priority, and – despite her assertion in 2000 that she would be a “traditional First Lady” – she’s already made clear that she’s not interested in sticking close to her husband’s side. She returned to New York City just two days after President Trump’s inauguration, and hasn’t been back to Washington D.C. since. On Wednesday, meanwhile, it was “surrogate first lady” Ivanka Trump who accompanied her father to honour a naval officer killed during a bungled raid in Yemen – a duty traditionally performed by the president’s wife.

However, FLOTUS’s people have asserted that Melania will be moving into the White House – eventually.


Melania and Donald Trump arriving in Washington the day before his inauguration. She has not appeared in D.C. since shortly after her husband was sworn in.

“Mrs. Trump will be moving to D.C. and settling in to the White House at the end of the school year, splitting her time between New York and D.C. in the meantime,” the First Lady’s senior adviser, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, told CNN.

She continued: “Mrs. Trump is honoured to serve this country and is taking the role and responsibilities of First Lady very seriously. It has only been a short time since the inauguration, and the First Lady is going to go about her role in a pragmatic and thoughtful way that is unique and authentic to her.”

Read more: JK Rowling responds to Trump supporters threatening to burn Harry Potter books

This statement echoes the explanation given by then president-elect Trump back in November, when he said that his wife and son would join him in Washington after Barron had completed his year at Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School in New York, where a year’s tuition can cost almost £38,000.

However, a “family insider” told US Weekly on Wednesday that the much-anticipated move may not happen at all. “They will re-evaluate toward the end of the school year if they will keep this arrangement or if Melania and Barron will move to Washington,” said the source. “They could go either way right now.”


Melania Trump with her son Barron, who she has described as her top priority.

Also apparently preventing the First Lady from spending more time in D.C. with dear Donald is the lengthy recruitment process as she assembles her own personal staff.

She announced this week that she has hired Lindsay Reynolds, who previously worked for George W. Bush’s administration, as her chief of staff.

Read more: Everything you need to know about new First Lady Melania Trump

However, CNN reports that FLOTUS hasn’t yet hired the rest of her staff, announced any of her official platforms, released a social-events schedule or a Washington calendar – moves most former First Ladies have made swiftly.

The First Lady alluded to the delay in a statement, saying: “I am putting together a professional and highly experienced team, which will take time to do properly. I am excited to be organising and bringing together such a dynamic and forward-thinking group of individuals who will work together to make our country better for everyone.”

Watch: The importance of #WorldHijabDay

Only two previous First Ladies in American history did not live in the White House. Anna Harrison, the wife of 19th century Whig president William Harrison, never entered 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue because her husband died from pneumonia while she was packing for the move.

Martha Washington, wife of the first president of the United States, George Washington, didn’t occupy the White House either. However, she had a good excuse: in 1789, when her husband took office, the house hadn’t been built yet.  

Images: Getty, Rex Features



Hillary Clinton is releasing a children’s book

Romola edited.jpg

Romola Garai on why we must all fight to stand up for refugees


Facebook is finally changing its feed to tackle fake news


The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Amanda Seyfried’s new abode to Jessica Chastain’s feline friend

by Nicola Colyer
17 Oct 2017

Jennifer Lawrence was forced into a naked line-up by a producer

In the name of weight-loss “inspiration”

by Amy Swales
17 Oct 2017

Abigail Breslin’s photo reveals how domestic abuse can stay with you

The actor has opened up about the realities of living with PTSD

17 Oct 2017

“Why Liar is proof that TV's depiction of rape is damaging to women”

The proliferation of rape in TV and film is a real problem for the representation of women

by Harriet Hall
17 Oct 2017

Nigella Lawson reveals why red is the ultimate foodie colour

As she tracks her gastronomic love affair with all things crimson

by Stylist
17 Oct 2017

Reese Witherspoon says she was sexually assaulted at 16 by a director

“Producers made me feel that silence was a condition of my employment”

by Amy Swales
17 Oct 2017

Courtney Love tried to warn us about Harvey Weinstein in 2005

This video shows her speaking out against Weinstein over a decade ago

by Susan Devaney
17 Oct 2017

Hillary Clinton praises NHS after receiving medical treatment in UK

Clinton spoke about the UK’s health service during an appearance on The Graham Norton Show

by Moya Crockett
17 Oct 2017

Maisie Williams’ response to Sophie Turner’s engagement is perfect

There’s a reason these two have been dubbed #BFFgoals, you know…

by Kayleigh Dray
17 Oct 2017

America Ferrera reveals she was sexually assaulted as a 9-year-old

‘I believed that I was somehow responsible for the actions of a grown man’

by Kayleigh Dray
17 Oct 2017