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20-Day Absence Sparks Melania Conspiracy Theories

Rumors are 'silly nonsense,' spokeswoman says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 30, 2018 5:24 AM CDT
In this May 7, 2018, photo, first lady Melania Trump speaks on her initiatives during an event in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
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(Newser) – Melania Trump hasn't been seen in public since May 10, when she joined her husband to welcome back detainees from North Korea—and while the first lady's office says she's recovering from kidney surgery, conspiracy theorists have wilder ideas. Some have suggested that she's divorcing President Trump and moving back to New York, others suspect she's now cooperating with the Robert Mueller investigation, and some even claim she has deserted Trump to live with the Obamas, reports Politico. Rumors also swirled when the White House failed to provide updates after her surgery earlier this month, and insiders say it's Melania herself who has sought to keep the information released to a minimum.

The first lady, who returned to the White House May 20 after five days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, doesn't enjoy all the attention and would sooner have rumors swirl than "play the game" of telling nosy people what they want to know, insiders say. "Sadly, we deal with conspiracy theories all the time—so this is nothing new, just more silly nonsense," spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a statement, per CNN. "She is doing great. I wouldn't characterize it as a long absence. She was hospitalized for almost a week and is now home and recovering." Grisham tells People that Melania is doing "really well" and has been involved in several White House staff meetings this week to plan the Congressional Picnic and Fourth of July events. (The popularity of "Melania" as a baby name is up 720 places.)

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