Ex-Aide Suggests Self-Centered Reason Melania & Ivanka Are Staying Clear Of Trump's Trial

As Donald Trump's hush money case reached its jury deliberations on May 29, 2024, he had been on trial for over a month, and in that time, he had a handful of people support him in court. From Trump's vice president contenders to two of his sons, the former president hasn't been alone in his legal journey. However, two of the most important people in his life have been noticeably missing from the courtroom. Melania and Ivanka Trump have not appeared in court, and an ex-aide has suggested a self-centered reason why.

Former White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham thinks Melania and Ivanka's absence is because they're focused on the public's perception. Grisham told CNN, "This family is really focused on optics. They're always focused on optics." She continued, "But you know, I think that Melania and Ivanka are both thinking of their own optics, and they haven't been here the whole time. And I'm just not sure showing up now would do anything but cause more speculation."

Two weeks prior to Grisham's comments, former Melania advisor, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, shared similar sentiments to CNN (via The Hill). She said, "I don't think we're going to see Melania Trump accompany Donald to court. ... She is not going to put herself in a position where she's given anyone the opportunity to say anything negative about her." Melania and Ivanka may have been worried about public perception, but that didn't stop people from talking about their absence.

Melania Trump's absence from the courtroom doesn't mean she doesn't support Donald

Just because Melania Trump hasn't been by Donald's side in court that doesn't mean she doesn't support him. In May 2024, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff wrote in The Daily Beast, "[T]he truth is Melania knows and supports Donald and his viewpoints. When he goes full brass knuckles on his supposed enemies, she's often encouraging him to aggressively go for it. She's his biggest cheerleader." Melania just hasn't backed Donald publicly. Like Stephanie Grisham, Wolkoff suggested that the former first lady worried about how she would appear to the public while her husband's hush money trial played out in the press.

As for how Ivanka Trump feels about her dad's legal troubles, that's a bit more unclear as she has chose to step away from politics since leaving the White House. In March 2024, before Donald's trial began, a source told People, "She is very happy, living her best life. She left politics totally in the rearview mirror and so this time around, even if her dad is the leading Republican candidate, she basically doesn't care. She told him when he said he was going to run again that she didn't want to be involved." It looks like Ivanka kept the same mindset when it came to her father's hush money case — avoiding it at all cost.