As President Trump continues to unnerve the public, even members of his own family have begun to distance themselves a bit. But he may have a stealth cheerleader within their ranks: his daughter-in-law Lara Trump.
Last week, the president's 71st birthday dinner at the White House seemed to indicate some tension. There was no family photo. Sons Eric and Donald Jr. and daughter Ivanka posed individually around the White House grounds with their own spouses and children. Erstwhile youngest daughter Tiffany was the only Trump child to pose with her dad, and the only one to tweet the L-word.
'Happy Birthday dad @realdonaldtrump. I love you!' she wrote.
Father's Day also raised some eyebrows. The president spent the day tweeting about poll results, not mentioning his children. Likewise, in their Father's Day tweets, Eric and Donald didn't shout out to their father at all. Ivanka posted a picture calling her husband and her father "incredible."
It was left to daughter-in-law Lara Trump to use the word "love" in the vicinity of the president's name.
Eric Trump retweeted this but offered no wishes of his own. Escalating things, Lara — who lists her personal Twitter URL as donaldjtrump.com, while her husband and brother-in-law tout their business site — also tweeted that she gave her husband all Donald Trump-themed gifts:
She also offered wishes — with a heart — on the president's birthday:
Happy birthday, Mr. President! We are so proud of you! 🇺🇸❤️ pic.twitter.com/KcIeFBvnbb— Lara Trump (@LaraLeaTrump) June 15, 2017
Thirty-four-year-old Lara (née Yunaska), a former personal trainer and TV producer, has been married to Eric since 2014 and now sits on the board of directors of the Eric Trump Foundation. The couple exchanged vows at Mar-a-Lago, and brother-in-law Jared Kushner officiated the wedding.
Eric Trump and Kushner are now both under separate investigations: Eric for allegedly funneling donations for a cancer-charity benefit out of the Eric Trump Foundation and into Trump businesses, and Kushner for his undisclosed meetings with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak and personal business dealings overall.
As perhaps befits her athletic background, Lara Trump has taken a hardier approach to defending the family than her sister-in-law Ivanka, who recently complained that the "viciousness" of Washington and "personal attacks" surprised her. Last week, Lara Trump told Fox News' Sean Hannity, "We can handle it. We've taken it for two years and have accepted it."
Her fiery salvo passed unnoticed on the Trump children's Twitter accounts. Lara shared the video with the caption "ICYMI."