Melania Trump Refused to Condemn Violence on January 6, Former Aide Alleges

Melania Trump Stephanie Grisham January 6 Violence
Melania Trump refused to publicly condemn "lawlessness & violence" amid the Capitol riot on January 6, 2021, alleged Stephanie Grisham, her former chief of staff. Above, the former first lady is shown standing next to former President Donald Trump as the national anthem played during the World Series in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 30, 2021. Elsa/Getty

Former first lady Melania Trump refused to condemn violence as rioters stormed the Capitol on January 6, alleged Stephanie Grisham, her former chief of staff.

After former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson testified at a public hearing of the House's January 6 committee on Tuesday, Grisham shared to Twitter what appeared to be a text message exchange showing the former first lady abruptly declining to promote exclusively "peaceful protests" amid the Capitol riot. Grisham confirmed to The Washington Examiner that the communication was between herself and Melania Trump on January 6, 2021, while adding that she "resigned immediately after her response."

"Do you want to tweet that peaceful protests are the right of every American, but there is no place for lawlessness & violence?" reads a screen capture of Grisham's text message to the former first lady.

"No," replied Melania Trump, who was labeled with the initials "MT" on Grisham's phone.

Grisham also praised Tuesday's January 6 committee testimony from Hutchinson, an ex-aide to Mark Meadows, former White House chief of staff, saying that Hutchinson had "chosen to stand up for the truth" despite potential threats from "MAGA extremists."

Hutchinson's testimony asserted several shocking claims about former President Donald Trump's behavior on January 6, including him allegedly attempting to physically commandeer a limo to take him to the Capitol that day, and saying that former Vice President Mike Pence "deserved it" when Capitol rioters chanted "hang Mike Pence."

Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, one of only two Republicans to serve on the committee, suggested that some of those who testified before the committee had been subjected to possible attempted intimidation. During Tuesday's hearing, Cheney read comments from witnesses who said they were told to respond to the committee carefully in order to stay in the "good graces" of "Trump World."

"The potential witness tampering is no surprise," Grisham tweeted. "Trump world is vicious in their smears & well aware that MAGA extremists threaten violence to those who speak out. Proud of Cassidy & all who have chosen to stand up for the truth despite the personal implications."

Although Grisham worked closely with Melania Trump by serving as her chief of staff during most of her time in the White House—she also served as White House press secretary between April 2019 and July 2020—relations between the two women have soured significantly after she left her position.

Tensions increased further when Grisham's book I'll Take Your Questions Now was published last year. The memoir contains several unflattering allegations about the Trump White House, including the former president repeatedly making sexist comments and fostering a culture of lying.

The book also claims that Melania Trump was distant from her husband, to the extent that she went to bed early as he lost the 2020 election and regularly edited him out of photos and tweets. In response to the former president's denials of having affairs with other women, Melania Trump also allegedly said "Oh, please, are you kidding me?"

The former first lady's office reportedly issued a fiery statement condemning Grisham ahead of the book's release, accusing her of "mistruth and betrayal" in an attempt to "gain relevance and money at the expense of Mrs. Trump."

Newsweek has reached out to Melania Trump for comment.