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Book Says Melania Trump Delayed Washington Move as Negotiating Tack

Melania Trump, the first lady, remained in New York during the first months of her husband’s presidency because she was renegotiating their prenuptial agreement after his surprise victory in the 2016 election, according to a new book.

In the book, “The Art of Her Deal: The Untold Story of Melania Trump,” Mary Jordan, a reporter for The Washington Post, writes that in the way she manages her image, Mrs. Trump is far more similar to President Trump than people have realized.

But one of the most striking details that Ms. Jordan reveals is something that had been rumored for years — that Mrs. Trump used the president’s victory in November 2016 as an opportunity to solidify her financial standing, for herself and for the couple’s son, Barron.

During that time, Mrs. Trump was able “to amend her financial arrangement with Trump — what Melania referred to as ‘taking care of Barron,’” Ms. Jordan wrote, according to The Post.

“She wanted proof in writing that when it came to financial opportunities and inheritance, Barron would be treated as more of an equal to Trump’s oldest three children,” Ms. Jordan wrote.

The prenuptial agreement, which Ms. Jordan wrote was not initially overly generous to Mr. Trump’s third wife, was renegotiated after a brutal presidential campaign during which audio emerged of the future president bragging to the “Access Hollywood” reporter Billy Bush about grabbing women by their genitals.

And there was a Wall Street Journal report during the campaign about The National Enquirer paying for and then quashing a claim from a former Playboy model, Karen McDougal, about having had an affair with Mr. Trump.

Asked to comment about the book on Friday, Mrs. Trump’s chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, said: “Yet another book about Mrs. Trump with false information and sources. This book belongs in the fiction genre.”

According to The Post’s account of the book, Mrs. Trump has been one of the biggest supporters of her husband’s political career. And she is described as one of his most important sounding boards, and someone who Mr. Trump often relies on.

But she has also encouraged some of his darker behavior, like Mr. Trump’s lie that President Barack Obama may have been born in Kenya.

And she has also constructed an image of herself that is not always supported by fact. For instance, Ms. Jordan raises questions about Mrs. Trump’s claims of being fluent in a number of languages.

“Photographers and others who have worked with her over the years — including native speakers of Italian, French and German — told me that they never heard her use more than a few words of those languages,” Ms. Jordan writes.

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