SO? Michelle Obama Says Melania Trump Never Asked Her For Advice

USA first lady Melania Trump Tuesday publicly pushed for the dismissal of Deputy National Security Advisor Mira Ricardel: a rare criticism of a senior administration official by the president's wife.

In those few months on the job, Ricardel generated a long list of enemies and developed a reputation for shouting at subordinates, plotting against White House officials she disliked and leaking stories about her administration opponents to the press.

Adding to the sense of upheaval at the White House, Special Counsel Robert Mueller was planning to file more indictments in his 18-month investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign, sources said.

Mira Ricardel is the White House deputy national security adviser.

The announcement could come as soon as this week, three of these officials said.

In an interview with ABC News during the five-day trip to Ghana, Mali, Kenya and Egypt last month, the first lady said there are people in the White House whom she and the president can not trust. In October, the first lady told ABC News that she did not trust some administration officials and that she had made her husband aware.

"It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House", Grisham said.

Obama and Trump met after the election and toured the White House together, just as Obama and Bush did in 2008.

Ricardel was seen at an official White House event with the president as Grisham's statement was issued and was shown in a tweet that the president sent out after the event. Ricardel then joined the National Security Council as Bolton's deputy in April after he was named national security adviser.

A spokesman for the National Security Council had no immediate comment.

"I assume Melania's doing it with her traditional goodbye gift: a jacket that says, 'U don't really work here anymore do u?'" Colbert joked.

West Wing officials were caught off guard on Tuesday by the statement from the first lady's spokeswoman targeting Ricardel, two sources familiar with the matter said. And Pentagon officials have said privately they believe Ricardel had a hand in spreading rumours this year about Mattis falling from favour with the White House and perhaps departing.

Post midterms, he's already lost one senior member of his administration in former attorney-general Jeff Sessions.

Even one NSC official who said they liked Ricardel said she "liked to pick fights with a lot of different folks" and suspected her latest feud with the first lady's office was "the last straw".

"More, Do You?" Colbert snarked.

  • Kyle Peterson