In addition to his ideas that are straight-up racist, misogynist, and xenophobic, Donald Trump has some ideas that are just peculiar. Take, for example, his remarks during a recent appearance on Fox & Friends, his not remotely biased media outlet of choice, during which he proclaimed that his wife, Melania Trump, rivaled Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis in popularity and fashion-icon-ness.
“We have our own Jackie O, it’s called Melania, Melania T,” he said during the interview, according to Politico. Leaving aside the syntax issues here for a moment—the president referring to his wife as an “it”—let’s talk about Trump’s evidence for this bold statement. “When I go speak in big crowds, we have tremendous crowds, and so many people are holding up banners,” he said. Some of those banners, apparently, declare their support for Melania T via such rallying cries as “We love high heels.”
The first lady seems to have been courting this comparison: At her husband’s inauguration, in 2017, she wore a powder blue dress, jacket, and long gloves by Ralph Lauren, apparently channeling John F. Kennedy’s widow, who was known for her neat, Chanel-inspired ensembles. And Melania hasn’t exactly shied away from unexpected, statement-making sartorial decisions: the stiletto pumps worn to visit a Hurricane Harvey–devastated Texas; the pith helmet—widely interpreted as a symbol of colonialism—worn to visit several African nations with a history of European colonial exploitation. (Still, she’d like everyone to focus on what she does, not what she wears.)
Realistically, she’s probably not going to match the Jackie O mythology in any meaningful way—not going to win the same popularity contests, probably not going to be played by Natalie Portman in a drama—but, as the Post points out, she’s significantly more popular than her husband. But she probably doesn’t care.