Trump congratulates Melania on ‘doing a great job’ after skipping her birthday message

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Donald Trump on Monday congratulated his wife Melania Trump for a “great job” as first lady after he appeared to have snubbed her on her birthday once again.

The former president of the United States wrote on Truth Social that the former first lady was doing the “great job” specifically with her “Be Best” initiative, an anti-bullying campaign launched during the Trump presidency that was frequently derided due to her husband’s well-known bullying style on the campaign trail.

His post notably came just a few days after Ms Trump celebrated her 53rd birthday with a small gathering of friends at Mar-a-Lago. Her husband went the entire day without acknowledging her on social media, despite the frequency of his posting.

According to People magazine, it wasn’t even clear if Mr Trump attended the celebration itself — representatives confirmed to the magazine only that the former president would attend if his schedule permitted.

This latest snub of his wife’s birthday is far from the first awkward moment to occur on Melania’s (supposedly) special day. In 2018, Mr Trump admitted that he had forgotten her birthday that year until just immediately beforehand, resulting in her only receiving flowers and a card.

The following year, the president marked his wife’s birthday by inviting the prime minister of Japan to the White House for a state dinner, eschewing the private moments that other presidents and their loved ones have shared.

A source told People that “Melania likes a low-key celebration with family and that I believe is her plan for this year’s birthday”.

“If Donald is here, he will be joining the family to celebrate his wife’s birthday. Despite what you hear, the Trumps are a close family,” the source claimed.

One reason for Mr Trump’s apparent distraction could be the cascade of legal battles he currently faces.

After becoming the first ex-president to come under criminal indictment last month, Mr Trump now awaits a decision by a district attorney in Georgia regarding whether he and/or members of his former legal team will face criminal charges over their attempts to interfere with the results of the 2020 election.