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The first night of the Republican National Convention included a much-anticipated speech from Donald Trump’s wife, Melania.
Melania has been relatively quiet throughout her husband’s campaign, preferring to allow Trump’s daughter Ivanka to act as surrogate for her father.
She has occasionally introduced her husband at campaign events and given interviews to select media outlets, but she’s never publicly expressed political opinions of her own.
If Trump becomes president, Melania would be an unusual first lady. A former model born and raised in Slovenia (formerly part of Yugoslavia), Melania is Trump’s third wife, and she is 24 years his junior.
How did a young model growing up in a communist country end up on the brink of becoming first lady of the United States? Here are some facts about her fascinating life:
If Donald Trump becomes president, Melania will be the only first lady to have been born outside the US other than Louisa Catherine Johnson, the wife of John Quincy Adams. (She was born in England, though her father was an American merchant.)
She’d also be the only first lady to be her husband’s third spouse, the only first lady whose first language isn’t English, and the only first lady to have been a former lingerie model.
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Donald Trump met Melania at a party in 1998 — which he attended with another date. Melania refused to give him her number at first, but later asked for his and called him a few days later.
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Melania married Donald in 2005. Her guests included Matt Lauer, Katie Couric, Kelly Ripa, Barbara Walters, Rudy Giuliani — and Bill and Hillary Clinton.
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Melania is a devoted mother to her son, 10-year-old Barron. The Trumps have staff to help with cooking and housework, but they don’t have a traditional nanny, and Melania frequently helps Barron with his homework and takes him to sports practices.
Melania once appeared in a commercial for Aflac alongside the famous Aflac duck.
She is involved with a number of charities, including the Martha Graham Dance Company, the Boys Club of New York, the American Red Cross, and the Police Athletic League. She has said she would continue her philanthropic work as first lady.
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Melania is fluent in four languages — that would make her the most linguistically gifted first lady in American history.
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When asked which of her husband’s habits she wished he would give up, Melania replied that she wants Donald to tone down his activity on Twitter.
Melania told The New York Times she would be a traditional first lady, similar to Jackie Kennedy: supporting her husband without being overtly political.
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