“I love Tiffany,” President Donald Trump told reporters Friday, denying negative allegations about his relationship with his youngest daughter that were reportedly made by his now-ex-executive assistant.
Madeleine Westerhout, who served as Trump’s personal secretary and “gatekeeper” since the transition period, abruptly exited the White House on Thursday, sparking rumors and speculation.
A Friday Politico report filled in the details, reporting that during an off-the-record meeting at a restaurant near Trump’s Bedminster, New Jersey golf resort, Westerhout overshared about the Trump family with several reporters.
Westerhout reportedly bragged that “she had a better relationship with Trump than his own daughters, Ivanka and Tiffany Trump, and that the president did not like being in pictures with Tiffany because he perceived her as overweight,” according to the report.
The former assistant, who a source said “uncharacteristically” opened up after having a few drinks, also reportedly joked that Trump would be unable to pick Tiffany out of a crowd.
Trump denies claims
President Trump was asked multiple questions about his daughter and Westerhout during a brief press conference near the Marine One helicopter prior to his departure for Camp David, where he and his team plan to monitor the incoming Hurricane Dorian.
Asked if the allegation that he didn’t want to take pictures with Tiffany was true, Trump replied, “Oh, no. No. Tiffany is great. I love Tiffany. I love Tiffany.”
Later, asked if he had spoken recently with his daughter, Trump revealed that he intended to speak with her after he had arrived at Camp David.
Asked what he would say to her with regard to the allegations, the president replied, “I’m going to say it’s just absolutely false. She is a wonderful person. She studies so hard. She’s a great student. And she’s just a great — she’s a great person. So I look forward to talking to her. I’ll be talking to her as soon as I get — and I love Tiffany. Tiffany is a great person.”
Trump: “Very unfortunate”
As for Westerhout, Trump appeared disappointed at the loss. He made it clear on Twitter that he held no hard feelings toward her, given that they had spoken and she had apologized.
Trump chided the media for leaking the contents of an off-the-record meeting, but added, “But nevertheless, you don’t say things — you don’t say certain things. So, it was too bad.”
Later, in response to a follow-up question about Westerhout’s exit from the White House, Trump said, “I think it was unfortunate. She said she was drinking. And the whole thing was very unfortunate. And I think the press is very dishonest because it was supposed to be off the record. But, still, you don’t say things like she said, which were just a little bit hurtful to some people.”