Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, the First Lady’s former advisor, writes about Melania and Ivanka’s relationship in her highly-anticipated memoir, Melania & Me. In an excerpt from her book, shared with New York Magazine, Wolkoff writes about the nickname Melania gave Ivanka as well as a story about President Trump’s inauguration day four years ago.
According to Wolkoff, she and Melania plotted to block out Ivanka from the view of the cameras. “Ivanka texted me a photo of Barack Obama’s swearing-in, his hand on the Bible, Michelle, Malia, and Sasha standing to his left. She wrote, ‘FYI regarding the swearing in. It is nice to have family with him for this special moment,’” Wolkoff writes.
After receiving the text, Wolkoff says she and Melania hatched a plan they dubbed “Operation Block Ivanka.”
Wolkoff and Melania Plan “Operation Block Ivanka”
“Instead, Melania and I launched Operation Block Ivanka to keep her face out of that iconic ‘special moment,'” Wolkoff writes. “To plan this, I needed to know exactly where the family would be seated and the camera angles.”
In search of a schematic for the inauguration day, Wolkoff then spoke with an executive to request a sketch. “One of the WIS executives sent me notes from the walk-through,” she writes. “He had been prohibited from taking pictures; instead, he’d drawn a sketch to give me a decent overview of the Trump section and where the chairs would be positioned in a semicircle around the dais.”
Wolkoff continues by writing: “We knew where the cameras would be located because the platforms were already in place. Using his sketch, we were able to figure out whose face would be visible when Donald and Melania sat in their seats, and then when the family stood with Chief Justice John Roberts for Donald to take the oath of office.”
Melania and Wolkoff then planned to prevent Ivanka from sitting on the aisle. “If Ivanka was not on the aisle, her face would be hidden while she was seated. For the standing part, we put Barron between Donald and Melania and made sure that Don Jr. stood next to Melania, not Ivanka,” she writes.
Wolkoff later acknowledges that Melania took part in the scheme. “We were all exhausted and stressed out. Yes, Operation Block Ivanka was petty. Melania was in on this mission. But in our minds, Ivanka shouldn’t have made herself the center of attention in her father’s inauguration,” she writes.
[H/T New York Magazine]