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First lady Melania Trump. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)
First lady Melania Trump. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)


Melania Trump prevails in clash with West Wing over deputy national security adviser 

By WITW Staff on November 15, 2018

In response to an unprecedented move by a first lady, the deputy national security adviser is out of her White House job, Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced Wednesday evening. “Mira Ricardel will continue to support the president as she departs the White House to transition to a new role within the administration,” the White House press secretary said in a statement.

The acquiescence by the president to his wife’s public demands was the result of a dispute between Ricardel and Melania Trump that stretched back to her early October trip to Africa, and has festered ever since. According to a report by The Washington Post, Ricardel had made several enemies in the West Wing, including the president’s chief of staff, John Kelly, but no one had been able to successfully lobby for her dismissal — except the first lady. “It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House,” Melania Trump’s spokesperson said on Tuesday.

Outgoing White House Deputy National Security Advisor Mira Ricardel (R) appears with President Donald Trump at a Diwali ceremony as the office of first lady Melania Trump announced a request from the first lady that Ricardel be fired at the White House in Washington, U.S. November 13, 2018. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Observers described Melania Trump’s public demand for Ricardel’s removal as a sign of her willingness to strategically have an impact on key personnel decisions in her husband’s administration. She’s often been reserved, but when the stakes are high or she feels she’s been wronged, as in this case, she went on the attack, and prevailed.

The report went on cite several anonymous sources who painted Ricardel, the consummate longtime Washington insider, as an overbearing figure who often treated subordinates in a demeaning way and who had become “the most disliked aide in the West Wing.”

Read the full story at The Washington Post


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