Melania Trump's Ex-Spokeswoman Compares Her to 'Doomed' Marie Antoinette — as Former First Lady Slams Book

Stephanie Grisham will release a White House memoir next month

Stephanie Grisham
Stephanie Grisham. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

New details are emerging about a forthcoming memoir by Melania Trump's ex-spokeswoman, which Politico reports will include an insider's view of how the former first lady responded to the deadly Jan. 6 riots at the Capitol by supporters of her husband.

Stephanie Grisham's I'll Take Your Questions Now (an apparent reference to how she controversially chose not to give any televised press briefings) will be published on Oct. 5.

Grisham was the first lady's communications director and chief of staff and had also served as one of President Donald Trump's press secretaries. But she resigned within hours of the Capitol being breached.

According to an excerpt of Grisham's book previewed by Politico, the former first lady's response to the riots (or lack thereof) was at least partly to blame for her exit.

Grisham now describes Mrs. Trump like "the doomed French queen" Marie Antoinette: "Dismissive. Defeated. Detached."

According to her book, Politico reports, Grisham sent Mrs. Trump a text message within minutes of rioters grappling with Capitol police officers after breaking through barricades erected outside the building.

"Do you want to tweet that peaceful protests are the right of every American, but there is no place for lawlessness and violence?" Grisham asked the first lady, according to Politico.

Mrs. Trump — who was reportedly overseeing a photo shoot that day — replied within a minute with a short and simple answer: "No."

Stephanie Grisham (left) and Melania Trump. Jacquelyn Martin/AP/Shutterstock; Shutterstock

Elsewhere in Grisham's book, according to Politico, she writes that she asked the first lady if she should reach out to Dr. Jill Biden and the incoming team to help ease the transition between the administrations.

Mrs. Trump responded that Grisham should wait and "see what the West Wing does," as she — like President Trump — did not believe the election had been legitimate, despite no evidence of widespread fraud.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Mrs. Trump's office said of Grisham's book: "The intent behind this book is obvious. It is an attempt to redeem herself after a poor performance as Press Secretary, failed personal relationships, and unprofessional behavior in the White House. Through mistruth and betrayal, she seeks to gain relevance and money at the expense of Mrs. Trump."

Grisham's book follows a slew of memoirs by other Trump staffers, many of which depicted chaos and dysfunction during the administration, though some cast him in a positive light.

A source told PEOPLE of Grisham: "As usual, she doesn't tell the whole story. She is publishing a text with her own twist and mistruths."

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Grisham's memoir is notable for her access: She was a Trump aide dating back to his 2016 campaign. In 2019, she was named both the White House's press secretary and communications director in addition to continuing in her role as communications director for the first lady.

In early 2020, she returned to the East Wing as Mrs. Trump's chief of staff and spokeswoman.

A source close to the project told PEOPLE recently that Grisham's book — subtitled "What I Saw in the Trump White House" — includes "a lot of stuff that has never been heard before."

"She knows where all the bodies are buried and she has a shovel," this source said, calling the book "a memoir of her time in the White House in the unusual position of being the only person to serve both the president and the first lady at the same time."

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