First lady Melania Trump will not appear at any political campaign events in the final days before the Nov. 6 midterm, her office confirmed Thursday, despite the president’s plan for an all-out blitz of at least 10 rallies leading up to Election Day.
‘Due to her schedule as a mother and First Lady, especially with the holidays coming up, there are no plans for her to campaign at this time,’ her communications director Stephanie Grisham said in a statement to DailyMail.com.
Melania Trump has not been seen on the campaign trail in the 2018 midterm election and was a reluctant campaigner for her husband in 2016.
‘She hates campaigning,’ a former campaign official from President Trump’s 2016 effort told DailyMail.com.
‘She has her own style,’ the person noted but said it was unlikely she’d be out on the trail for the Republican Party ‘because she hates campaigns so much.’
But, the person added, people would likely see her out for her husband in 2020.
The first lady’s step back comes as President Donald Trump ramps up his campaign presence with less than two weeks to go until the midterm election, where he and the Republican Party are working to keep a blue wave from giving Democrats control on Capitol Hill.
He’s adding 10 rallies to his schedule and giving another $9 million to Republican efforts, bringing his total investment into the midterms at over $20 million, according to his campaign.
The first lady has taken a more public profile of late – taking an international trip to Africa, sitting down with ABC News in a primetime interview, ramping up her ‘Be Best’ campaign and appearing at White House functions, such as Wednesday’s signing of opioid legislation where she commented on the bombing attempts on her husband’s political rivals.
Her poll numbers are higher than her husband’s – which is typical as first ladies usually rate higher than presidents.
Her favorability was at 54 percent in a CNN poll earlier this month while President Trump’s was at 41 percent.
She hasn’t been completely absent from the midterms. President Trump often mentions her at his campaign rallies, touting the great job she is doing, which gets huge applause from the crowds.
And there have been opportunities for her to get involved, particularly at fundraisers where a first lady can be a big draw for donors.
But she hasn’t stepped up to it.
In August, she and President Trump visited the neonatal intensive care unit at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus that treats babies with opioid addiction.
After that visit, the president stopped by the Ohio Republican Party State Dinner – a party fundraiser, which the first lady did not attend.
She was not a huge presence on the 2016 campaign trail either, making a few appearances with her husband and speaking reluctantly when he called her up to the mic.
Melania Trump also endured heavy criticism and charges of plagiarism after it was noted how much her speech to the Republican National Convention sounded like a speech Michelle Obama gave to the Democratic National Convention eight years earlier.
That speech is ‘still an incident that looms large in her story with the American public,’ said professor Katherine Jellison, an expert on first ladies at Ohio University.
She added that the first lady’s style isn’t a good mesh with the president’s ‘preferred style of campaigning.’
It ‘seems to be apathetical to her introverted personality,’ she noted.
‘These are very boisterous events and this does not seem her style,’ Jellison added.