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Former first lady Melania Trump fired back at an NBC News presidential historian who characterized Trump’s redesign of the White House Rose Garden as an “evisceration” with “grim results.”
What is the background?
NBC News presidential historian Michael Beschloss indirectly slammed Melania Trump last week when he posted a picture of the Rose Garden and disparaged the facelift that Trump completed of the historic grounds last year.
“Evisceration of White House Rose Garden was completed a year ago this month, and here was the grim result—decades of American history made to disappear,” Beschloss tweeted.
What did Melania Trump say?
The former first lady accused Beschloss of spreading “misleading information,” called him “dishonorable,” and said he “should never be trusted.”
“[Beschloss] has proven his ignorance by showing a picture of the Rose Garden in its infancy,” the Twitter account linked to the “Office of Melania Trump said on Sunday.
“The Rose Garden is graced with a healthy & colorful blossoming of roses,” the statement added. “His misleading information is dishonorable & he should never be trusted as a professional historian.”
It’s not clear why the Office of Melania Trump’s Twitter account does not have a “blue checkmark” indicating a verified profile. The account, however, is the official account belonging to Melania Trump’s post-White House office.
According to CNN, Melania Trump established a post-White House office in February to continue promoting her “Be Best” campaign, which is focused on promoting the flourishing of children.
What about the redesign?
Trump redesigned the Rose Garden to resemble the original 1962 design completed by Rachel Lambert Mellon.
The Associated Press reported on the changes:
The flowers in the garden are largely pastels, which are favored by the first lady, including taller white roses, which were in honor of the first papal visit to the White House by Pope John Paul II in 1979. A diamond-like shape of boxwoods was also added, while about a dozen crabapple trees were removed and will be replanted elsewhere on the grounds.
Moreover, a seating area on the east side of the garden — used at times by presidents for lunch and other meetings — has been removed and will be replaced by a yet-to-be-announced art installation.
The most visually striking change to the garden was the addition of a 3-foot (nearly 1-meter)-wide limestone walking path bordering the central lawn. Less noticeable changes include improved drainage and infrastructure and making the garden more accessible for people with disabilities. Audiovisual, broadcasting and other technical fixes are part of the plan, too.
The redesign was reportedly funded by private donations.