The Truth About Queen Elizabeth’s Relationship With Melania Trump

Queen Elizabeth II’s cozy relationship with former First Lady Michelle Obama is well documented (and once even caused a very minor scandal when Obama was photographed with an affectionate arm around the monarch’s back). Less well-documented is the queen’s relationship with America’s most recently departed First Lady, Melania Trump. We know that the two have, of course, met, but we can’t find any photographic evidence that they’ve ever hugged.

In general, the Trumps are not popular figures in the United Kingdom, per Politico, and the former president’s state visits to London were often met with massive protests by British citizens. Perhaps simply by virtue of Melania being quieter than her husband, nobody appears to have made a giant, mocking Melania balloon like the famous Donald Trump baby blimp, but that doesn’t mean she’s necessarily beloved.

As for the queen herself, royal tradition holds that monarchs must stay out of politics completely, so even if Queen Elizabeth felt similarly about Donald and Melania as her fellow Brits, she’d never say so out loud. So what can we deduce about Melania’s relationship with the queen?

Was Melania Trump sending secret signals to Queen Elizabeth?

Former President Donald Trump and Melania Trump first met the queen on a state visit to London in June 2019. Everyone (other than the protestors) appears cordial and polite in photos of the first interactions between Queen Elizabeth and the Trumps, which included some ceremonial hand-shaking, banqueting, and gift-giving. The former president, at least, seemed to enjoy the gathering, tweeting (via Vox), “The Queen and the entire Royal family have been fantastic.” The Trumps returned to the palace in December of that year to attend a NATO 70th anniversary reception hosted by the queen, per People, and were reportedly greeted “warmly.”

However, none of this says much about the real relationship between Melania and the monarch, which makes us think there isn’t much of one at all. On both occasions, the Trumps broke protocol by shaking hands with the royal family rather than bowing or curtsying, according to Insider, but if the queen was bugged, she’s never said so. And one style expert suggested to the UK’s Express that Melania was trying to use bold fashion as a way to stand out from the queen, saying, “Melania’s style choices demonstrate that she isn’t someone happy to fade into the background.” 

While she hasn’t said anything negative about former FLOTUS Melania, Queen Elizabeth hasn’t said anything particularly warm, either — as she had with many of her forebears. So, make of that what you will.

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