Ivana Trump: I Talk to Donald Regularly Despite 'Insane' Divorce

News & Politics

Donald Trump’s first wife, Ivana, has said her daughter Ivanka could run for president, and that she and Trump now speak regularly and have a warm relationship despite the “insane” circumstances of their notorious divorce.

Ivana Trump was married to Donald Trump from 1977 to 1992 and is the mother of three of the president’s children, Donald Jr, Ivanka and Eric. Next week she will publish Raising Trump, a book on her marriage and her life.

She knew her marriage was over, she writes, soon after a day in December 1989 when a “young blonde woman approached me out of the blue and said ‘I’m Marla and I love your husband. Do you?’ I said ‘Get lost. I love my husband.’ It was unladylike but I was in shock.”

In 1990, Trump’s affair with Marla Maples spawned an infamous New York Post headline: “Best Sex I’ve Ever Had”. In 1993, Trump married Maples, who is the mother of his daughter Tiffany. He is now married to Melania Trump, the mother of his son Baron.

The Associated Press purchased an early copy of Ivana Trump’s book, in which she writes glowingly about her marriage and her prominent role at the Trump Organization. She also writes about the pain Trump’s affair with Maples caused her and her children. Donald Jr did not speak to his father for a year after the split.

“I can only shake my head at how it insane it was,” Ivana writes. “I couldn’t turn on the television without hearing my name.”

The divorce came under scrutiny during the 2016 election, when it was reported that Ivana once signed a sworn deposition alleging Donald had raped her. She sought to clarify that the accusation, which Trump has consistently denied, was not intended in a “literal or criminal sense”. Trump’s lawyer amplified the issue, however, by suggesting to a reporter there was no such thing as marital rape.

In her book, Ivana writes that she and the president are now on warmer terms, speaking about once a week. She encourages him to keep using Twitter, she says. 

In a CBS News interview this week, Ivana said she was offered the post of ambassador to the Czech Republic but turned it down because she already had “a perfect life”. The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the ambassadorship post.

Much of the book is spent recounting Ivana Trump’s childhood in Europe, her burgeoning modeling career in New York and Trump’s courtship. At their first meeting, she writes, Trump secured her and friends a table at a hot Manhattan restaurant, paid the check and chauffeured her back to her hotel in a giant Cadillac.

“My instincts told me that Donald was smart and funny an all-America good guy,” she writes.

Her children also contribute passages to the book and Ivana muses that her former husband may not be the only Trump to call the White House home.

“Maybe in 15 years, she could run for president?” she writes about Ivanka. “First Lady? Holds no appeal for me personally. First Mother? That could work.”

Ivanka is among the most high-profile figures in the Trump administration, a senior adviser to her father. But she has struggled to assert herself, appearing to hold little if any influence on his actions.

Most recently, she and her husband, Jared Kushner, another top aide to the president, have been at the center of controversy over their use of private email accounts for government business. Republicans including the Trumps claimed Hillary Clinton’s use of private email while secretary of state disqualified her from the presidency.

Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat on the House oversight committee, requested this week that the FBI review whether Ivanka and Kushner exchanged classified information through their personal accounts.

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