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(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Melania Trump’s disappearing act is over.

The first lady showed herself in public Wednesday for the first time in nearly a month, seated alongside her husband, President Donald Trump, for a briefing on the federal government’s preparedness for the hurricane season that began June 1.

The routine meeting at Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters took on outsized significance after the White House revealed that Mrs. Trump would accompany her husband. Prior to Wednesday, she had not been seen off the White House grounds since May 10.

The first sighting of the first lady came as she and the president strolled down the walkway from the Oval Office and climbed into “the Beast,” his idling limousine. She was wearing a belted trench coat and her customary high heels.

Minutes later, Mrs. Trump took her seat alongside the president at one end of a long conference table as the FEMA briefing began, appearing to be her usual self.

“She’s doing great. She went through a little rough patch, but she’s doing great,” Trump said at the top of the meeting, surrounded by his Cabinet as several governors and other officials participated by video conference. “And we’re very proud of her. She’s done a fantastic job as first lady.”

He added: “The people love you. The people of our country love you. So, thank you honey.”

The first lady smiled and nodded as her husband and others spoke during the portion of the briefing that was open to journalists. She and the president later spent a few minutes greeting FEMA employees. Mrs. Trump stepped with ease, smiled and was heard telling one worker “thank you very much.”

It was her first appearance away from the White House since she and the president traveled to Joint Base Andrews to welcome home three Americans who had been released from detention in North Korea.

Several days later, the first lady underwent a procedure to treat a kidney condition. She spent five days in the hospital before returning to the White House on May 19 to continue her recuperation. She held private meetings with her staff and worked on projects, though she skipped a few public events where her participation seemed likely, including a Medal of Honor presentation and a sports “field day” for professional athletes and kids on the South Lawn.

But speculation mounted as week after week passed without a public appearance, spawning wild theories about where she might be and what might have happened to her.

The first lady addressed the issue on Twitter last week, saying: “I see the media is working overtime speculating where I am & what I’m doing. Rest assured, I’m here at the @WhiteHouse w my family, feeling great, & working hard on behalf of children & the American people!”

Her husband was less charitable Wednesday.

“The Fake News Media has been so unfair, and vicious, to my wife and our great First Lady, Melania,” he wrote on Twitter. “During her recovery from surgery they reported everything from near death, to facelift, to left the W.H. (and me) for N.Y. or Virginia, to abuse. All Fake, she is doing really well!”

Trump also paired the text of the tweets with video of himself and the first lady on his Facebook page.

Fox News Channel, Trump’s favorite cable network, aired a segment this week in which the hosts of one of its shows criticized news reports about the first lady. Kellyanne Conway, one of Trump’s top advisers, echoed the criticism.

“I think it’s a shame that most of the coverage of the first lady in the last several weeks has been about conspiracy theories that have no basis in fact,” Conway told reporters at a breakfast meeting.

Earlier this week, the first lady participated in a White House event for military families. Journalists were not granted access out of respect for the families, meaning Mrs. Trump was seen only by those who attended.

But video posted on Twitter showed the first lady strolling into the East Room accompanied by the president. She later tweeted event photos that showed her sitting next to the president.

___

Associated Press writer Laurie Kellman contributed to this report.

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16 thoughts on “Melania Trump Is Back After A Month Away

  1. Rosanna Paris on said:

    She went to have a face lift. Its obvious. Look at her a month ago. Look at her now. Huge difference. Trump the scun sure tooj that lie and ean withbit. Kidney surgery, embolism my azz!

  2. Ted Gravely on said:

    Just more surgery and hair plugs. Needed time to get the swelling down. I would venture to say that with no surgery or makeup, she could pass for skeletor’s sister. If you get plastic surgery, you always need more plastic surgery. My beautiful black women, stop trying to be like them. We love your face, curves, and “real hair.” These people are fake, so why would you try to imitate? Look at Ms Alice released from prison and 60 something years old. She looks way better than this hard in the face, hair extension she-male.

    • u cant be serious you nation of islam pos. Your “women” if they can pass for that are universally considered the worst looking on the planet. brillo pad s=it for hair, lowest iq’s, most obese group of females, stretch marks all over their bodies and unrefined facial features. too easy blackboy

      • Ted Gravely on said:

        You proved my point. Little man, those are the small population of women attracted to you. Back to my topic……I noticed you didn’t dispute my description of the drag queen. It’s hard to argue with #facts and empirical data. She had a “operation” under the disguise of some other ailment. There is a reason the racist white massa was finding comfort with beautiful natural black women. The funny part is those black women were working in the fields or slaving in the house. The hairy funky so called “southern belle” was no match for the goddess like hue of her skin and soft full lips. Since coming to this country, black people have lost their way. Instead of being the best us, we desire to imitate your no d)(k having, weak only with a gun, stringing hair, foul smelling arses. You son will always fear a black planet! Now I don’t normally come back and I won’t again, but let that hold you trailer trash joe.

      • The only little man is you blackboy> How is it that yall still live in mud huts, 75 percent of the worlds aids carriers universally considered the scum of the planet LMAO

      • Mac Daddy on said:

        No, actually she didn’t, but you keep parroting the fake news Passing Through, it’s working so well for you. LOL

    • Passing Through!! on said:

      keep parroting the fake news Passing Through
      ++
      Sorry, but that’s not me shadowing you. Unlike you I don’t have to post as 2,3 4 different people to cosign myself.

  3. jhuff on said:

    DAAAAAAMMMMMM that Melania is a fine ass woman!!!!! sure is stark contrast to those 2 men that occupied the WH from 08 to 16

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