Former first lady Melania Trump slammed the press on Friday for reporting on a Florida Department of Consumer Services investigation into whether a charity she allegedly raised funds for was properly registered with authorities, accusing journalists of “[canceling] children’s hopes and dreams trying to undo [her]”.
Earlier this week, The New York Times reported that Mrs. Trump’s ‘Fostering the Future’ scholarship program – part of the ‘Be Best’ initiative she launched during her husband’s presidency – was to be the recipient of a charity fundraiser in which she participated in Naples, Florida.
But the Time also disclosed that no charities with the names “Be Best” or “Fostering the Future” were registered with Florida’s Consumer Services Division, raising the possibility that solicitations for l charity event violates a Florida law that requires any “charitable organization or sponsor” to register with the state before engaging in any solicitation of donations.
A Florida Consumer Services spokesperson told the Time the agency was “currently investigating whether this event involves an entity operating in violation of Section 496, Florida Statutes.”
In response, Mrs. Trump called the report “inaccurate, misleading and downright incorrect” and said that an Oklahoma school that originally agreed to accept donations from her for the Fostering the Future scholarship program “had withdrawn”.
She accused the school board of making a “politically motivated decision” and said she was “disappointed but not surprised”.
“It’s not the first time politics have gotten in the way of my mission to support children,” she said, adding that potential partners had declined to participate in her “Be Best” initiative while she was away. the White House.
Continuing, Mrs. Trump blamed the press for her difficulties.
“The media has created a narrative in which I try to act illegally or unethically. This portrayal is simply false and negatively affects the children I hope to support,” she said.
The former First Lady added that anyone who, in her words, “attacks” her initiatives or “creates[s] the appearance of impropriety” are “literally dream killers” but have vowed to continue to support “our children” and “do whatever it takes” while “staying positive in the face of negativity”.
Mrs. Trump’s charity troubles are not the first difficulties a member of her family has encountered in starting or running a nonprofit.
In 2018, New York State Attorney General Barbara Underwood filed a lawsuit against Mrs. Trump’s husband, then President Donald Trump, and her three eldest stepchildren – Donald Trump Jr, Eric Trump and Ivanka Trump. — as well as her husband’s eponymous charitable foundation. , alleging that the foundation had engaged in “a shocking pattern of illegality” in its operation.
The former president eventually admitted to using the foundation to help his business and political campaign and paid $2 million in restitution. He and his children have also been ordered to undergo mandatory training on the responsibilities of board members at the charity.
The Independent Gt