Melania Calls NYT Op-Ed Writer ‘Cowardly,’ Blasts Anonymous Sources

Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent
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First lady Melania Trump criticized the media’s use of anonymous sources and criticized a recent anonymous op-ed in the New York Times disparaging President Donald Trump.

“To the writer of the op-ed — you are not protecting this country; you are sabotaging it with your cowardly actions,” she said in a Thursday statement provided to CNN. She preceded her declaration on the op-ed with a lengthy condemnation of anonymous sources generally.

“Unidentified sources have become the majority of the voices people hear about in today’s news. People with no names are writing our nation’s history. If a person is bold enough to accuse people of negative actions, they have a responsibility to publicly stand by their words and people have a right to defend themselves,” she explained.

Speculation has run wild in Washington since the publication of the op-ed Wednesday afternoon. The article was authored by a self-described “senior administration official” who writes, “It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room,” adding, “We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t.”

The official described a cabal of administration officials actively circumventing the president’s daily desires. The op-ed comes just as excerpts from Bob Woodward’s new book on the administration are being released, showing a similar culture of senior aides who do not think highly of the president and work to temper his behavior.