Melania Trump accused of using taxpayers’ money for expensive new project

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The New York Times revealed the news on Monday, prompting social media users to question how the renovation will be funded. Some Twitter users have voiced their concern that the project will be financed from the taxpayer’s pocket as millions of Americans struggle economically.

A furious user wrote: “Priorities for @FLOTUS!

“Spend more taxpayer money on a house that the rest of the county are going to have to fumigate once the Trumps are forcefully removed in 5 months!”

One Twitter account added: “Millions of Americans are in dire straits and @FLOTUS can’t find anything to do but revamp the Rose Garden which is code for funnelling taxpayer money to her friends.”

Another user added: “In the midst of a pandemic and her husband causing war on the streets of our cities this is what the first lady deems a project.”

Suggesting a different use for taxpayers’ money, a user wrote: “I don’t think you should change anything.

“Use the monies to get hospitals more PPE or something to help the people who will be homeless in a few weeks.

“Help communities who don’t have access to the internet. So their children can attend school online.”

But a Trump administration official told the Times the renovation is being funded by private donors, with support from the National Park Service.

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Stephanie Grisham, Ms Trump’s Chief of Staff, told Newsweek that “private donations” will finance the plans for the Rose Garden.

This message was ratified via a formal announcement issued by the White House.

A statement from the First Lady included in the White House’s announcement read: “Preserving the history and beauty of the White House and its grounds is a testament to our nation’s commitment to the care of this landscape and our dedication to American ideals, safeguarding them for our children and their children for generations to come.”

In a prepared statement retrieved by the Times, Mrs Trump branded the project as an “act of expressing hope and optimism for the future.”

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It added: “Our country has seen difficult times before, but the White House and the Rose Garden have always stood as a symbol of our strength, resilience and continuity.”

Ms Trump is set to reveal the plans formally during an upcoming meeting with the Committee for the Preservation of the White House.

The project will feature a revamped walkway and new flowers and plants, the Times reported.

The section the First Lady chose to renew sits adjacent to the Oval Office and is often the backdrop for presidential events including Mr Trump’s media briefings.

Ms Trump’s ideas for the White House Rose Garden are similar to its initial layout.

Administration officials told the Times that the project was originally planned last year.

CNN’s source similarly mentioned that the idea was first conceived several months ago.

The project is expected to be finished within three weeks.

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