the big reads
Trump hits out at Melania critics
There's a long tradition of presidents defending their first ladies, and it's now US President Donald Trump's turn.
Trump has pushed back after Vanity Fair magazine, citing an anonymous source, reported that Melania Trump didn't want to become first lady "come hell or high water" and didn't think it would happen.
Not known to back away when he feels that he or a loved one has been slighted, Trump rose to his wife's defence hours after she pulled off one of the most high-profile first lady projects: decorating the White House for Christmas."Japanese Schindler" honoured in Lithuania
"Melania, our great and very hard working First Lady, who truly loves what she is doing, always thought that 'if you run, you will win,' Trump tweeted last week. "She would tell everyone that, 'no doubt, he will win.' I also felt I would win (or I would not have run) - and Country is doing great!"
It wasn't the first time Trump felt compelled to stand up for his former fashion model spouse.
He complained in an October TV interview about the "tremendous abuse" she took for leaving the White House in her signature stilettos as she joined him to survey hurricane damage in Texas. Sharp critiques about her footwear lit up social media as soon as departure photos of the Trumps were posted.‘Pro-refugee’ mayor attacked
"She's taken tremendous abuse," Trump said in the interview on Trinity Broadcasting Network. "She wants to look, out of respect for the White House, wants to look good leaving the front entrance to the White House."
Trump said his wife is a private person and "she doesn't need this," meaning the criticism. "But she does like to help people. She sees how important it is."