This post has been updated.
President-elect Donald Trump confirmed Sunday that future first lady Melania Trump and their 10-year-old son, Barron, will remain in New York after he becomes president, as first reported in the New York Post.
When asked about the family’s relocation plans post inauguration Trump, 70, told reporters that he would immediately settle into the executive mansion and that Mrs. Trump and his youngest son, a fourth grader at a Manhattan prep school, would move “Very soon. After he’s finished with school,” according to McClatchy White House Correspondent Anita Kumar. Trump transition spokesman Jason Miller confirmed that there was “obviously a sensitivity to pulling out a 10-year-old in the middle of the school year.”
“The campaign has been difficult for Barron, and she is really hoping to keep disruption to a minimum,” an unidentified person “close to Trump’s transition team” told the New York Post in an article published online early Sunday.
Melania Trump’s decision to not to live in the White House, at least for now, appears unprecedented. Nearly every first lady has taken up residence there. According to the White House Historical Association, George Washington and his wife, Martha Washington, did not live in the White House because it hadn’t been built yet. Also, first lady Anna Harrison, whose husband, William Henry Harrison, was the ninth president of the United States, never moved into the executive mansion because her husband died one month after his swearing-in.
Melania Trump, 46, told People magazine in September 2015 that her primary role was not as a campaigner or a political figure but as a mother to Barron, the youngest of the five Trump children, echoing a sentiment expressed by self-described “mom in chief” Michelle Obama when her husband was first elected president.
“My husband is traveling all the time,” Trump said. “Barron needs somebody as a parent, so I am with him all the time.”
A rare figure on the campaign trail, Melania Trump remains a mystery to most. We know she thinks her husband has a “good heart” and is a “great negotiator,” that she plans to take on cyberbullying as first lady and that the white jumpsuit she wore during her husband’s presidential victory speech was designed by Ralph Lauren. But not much else.
The question of whether she planned to move to Washington after her husband’s swearing-in had been batted around since the summer. Donald Trump reportedly plans to spend as much time as possible at the couple’s tony penthouse at Trump Tower in Manhattan and at his private Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Fla.