Fact Check: Is First Lady Melania Trump Fluent in Five Languages?
BY SIEEKA KHAN AUG 30, 2020 01:53 PM EDT
In February 2016, months before President Donald Trump was elected, First Lady Melania Trump was interviewed by MSNBC. She talked about her previous work as a fashion model, and she also said that she spoke multiple languages, namely Italian, French, English, Slovene, and German.
Melania Trump's linguistic skills
After the interview, social media posts and news articles declared her as a very skillful linguist. A lot of people are now wondering if it is true that she can speak five languages.
Melania Trump was born in the Central European country of Slovenia, and she worked as a fashion model in different European countries before she traveled to New York City in 1996.
In 2001, she attained permanent U.S residency through what is colloquially known as the "Einstein visa," which is a green card given to immigrants with amazing abilities. In 2006, she became a U.S citizen.
The First Lady has given a lot of interviews and speeches in English as an American public figure. The public is now curious if there is any evidence that she speaks the languages that she claims she knows, as some are doubting her claims of being multilingual.
In May 2017, President Trump, Melania Trump, and Ivanka Trump visited Pope Francis in Rome. A news clip captured the Pope asking the first lady in Italian what she feeds her husband.
Melania Trump did not appear to understand the question until a translator repeated it in English. The video was posted by Inside Edition.
During the same trip, Melania Trump visited a children's hospital but did not speak Italian aside from rudimentary phrases, while speaking in English with the children for the rest of the time.
Even when she said some Italian phrases, she employed the incorrect conjugation. The video was posted by Rome Reports.
Also, when President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump visited France, a video of the event was posted by The Telegraph, and it was captioned "Melania Trump speaks French" but it did not capture her saying much more than "Hello" and the phrase "My name is Melania" in French.
There are no videos of her speaking German. She attended the G20 summit dinner in 2017, and she talked to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who can speak English and German, but it was not reported what language they used while conversing.
According to AMERICAblog Editor John Aravosis, who is also multilingual, if Melania Trump is really distinctive among all the U.S first ladies with her fluency in multiple languages, she would at least demonstrate her skill by briefly engaging locals in conversations in their native languages when she went to Europe with the President, but she didn't.
Basically, the claim that the First Lady can speak multiple languages is deemed "unproven" since there is no concrete evidence that she could speak the languages that she claims to know.
The only two languages that she is undeniably fluent in are English and Slovene since it is her native language.
The White House also did not release any statement regarding her claim, and no other videos were posted of her speaking in Italian and French, except during her visit to Europe.
At least Melania makes an effort. Jill Biden can barely string together a simple phrase in Spanish.
Get me Melania's phone number, BTP! I'll pay you 200 bars of gold pressed latinum.
I am not one of those weak-spirited, sappy Americans who want to be liked by all the people around them. I dont care if people hate my guts; I assume most of them do. The important question is whether they are in a position to do anything about it. My affections, being concentrated over a few people, are not spread all over Hell in a vile attempt to placate sulky, worthless shits. - William S Burroughs