The First Lady, Melania Trump has finally been shamed into taking her best friend, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, off the government payroll.
Wolkoff, who has been friends with Melania for years, has been working in the white house as a “special government employee,” working on a contract basis as an unpaid senior adviser to the office of the first lady, according to the New York Times.
It was that paper that also reported on the $26 million contract given to Wolkoff and an associate, David Monn for services related to planning events for the inauguration. Monn’s firm was paid $3.7 million for its services.
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According to a statement from Wolkoff, her firm “retained a total of $1.62 million for all of its consulting and creative services, which was divided among our staff of 15 members (including myself),” out of the $26 million paid to her for the inauguration. The rest, she reported, was paid out to subcontractors and vendors.
The President, who is notoriously cheap, was allegedly furious when he found out about the price of the contract.
And sources say the choice of Wolkoff’s firm for the inaugural events was fishy to begin with. Wolkoff knew Melania from the socialite scene in New York, as was known for event planning on events like the highly elite Met Gala, an exclusive annual event that hosts the likes of Vogue editor Anna Wintour and other A-list celebrities.
That background was totally at odds with the Trump campaign’s message and appeal to the working class, blue collar everyman.
Wolkoff responded to the allegations of overpayment and nepotism with vague statements claiming that news reports about her relationship with the White House were erroneous, but she never provided any specific examples.
Melania, for her part, did do the right thing in terminating her friend’s contract, but only once she was shamed into doing so by the biggest newspaper in the country. If that’s what it takes.