Disputing some past news reports, Jordan writes that Mrs. Trump encouraged her husband to run for president from the beginning — and, unlike others, thought he could win.
"Melania was a believer. Now she told him his mouth had jeopardized their chance at the White House," Jordan writes. "Trump apologized. He said he didn't mean any of that; it was just his schtick. She left him to stew and retreated to her own bedroom."
After Mrs. Trump refused to do a joint TV interview, she announced she was going to release her own statement. Christie remembers her saying, "I am not going to sit here and pretend that I don't have an opinion," according to the book.
A day later, on October 8, 2016, Mrs. Trump's camp released this:
"The words my husband used are unacceptable and offensive to me. This does not represent the man that I know," she said. "He has the heart and mind of a leader. I hope people will accept his apology, as I have, and focus on the important issues facing our nation and the world."
Then-candidate Trump also released a somewhat apologetic response, explaining that the video captured what he called "locker room" talk "many years ago."
Jordan argues in her new book that, in fact, there's much that unites the first couple — including that both the president and first lady are as conscious of their public image as the other. But Mrs. Trump controls her narrative through privacy and by limiting what she says, in Jordan's view, where her husband is infamously unfiltered and provocative.
"As I reconstructed her journey, I learned that Melania has strengths her husband lacks, but she also shares many of the qualities that landed him in the Oval Office. In that sense Melania is like her husband," Jordan writes. "They are both independent, ambitious, image-conscious, unsentimental, and wary of those outside their inner circle. They are both fighters and survivors and prize loyalty over almost all else."
Jordan also reiterates the importance of Mrs. Trump's oft-said line about her husband: "I don't try to change him."
The author continues: "She has survived by focusing more on the upside of life with Trump than his behavior."
The Art of Her Deal: The Untold Story of Melania Trump is on sale now.
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