Melania Trump's controversial 'I really don't care' jacket was a jab at Ivanka: Report

A new unauthorized biography from CNN White House correspondent Kate Bennett is investigating Melania Trump's role in the White House, offering insight into her relationship with her husband and stepchildren, as well as highlighting some of her most divisive moments as first lady. 

In the book Free, Melania, which comes out this week, Bennett tackles what is still considered to be one of the most controversial moments of her tenure. And it all boils down to a jacket that cost less than 40 bucks. 

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Melania Trump's jacket causes a stir
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Melania Trump's jacket causes a stir
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Rorce Base in Maryland June 21, 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words 'I really don't care, do you?' following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US-Mexico border. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Rorce Base in Maryland June 21, 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words 'I really don't care, do you?' following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US-Mexico border. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Rorce Base in Maryland June 21, 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words 'I really don't care, do you?' following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US-Mexico border. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Rorce Base in Maryland June 21, 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words 'I really don't care, do you?' following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US-Mexico border. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Rorce Base in Maryland June 21, 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words 'I really don't care, do you?' following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US-Mexico border. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump boards a flight at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on June 12, 2018. - Trump was heading to Texas to visit shelters for migrant children separated from their parenets. (Photo by Mandel Ngan / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
JOINT BASE ANDREWS, MD - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump (C) climbs back into her motorcade after traveling to Texas to visit facilities that house and care for children taken from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border June 21, 2018 at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The first lady is traveling to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that children taken from their families at the border were receiving from the federal government. Following public outcry and criticism from members of his own party, President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday to stop the separation of migrant children from their families, a practice the administration employed to deter illegal immigration at the U.S.-Mexico border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
JOINT BASE ANDREWS, MD - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump (C) climbs back into her motorcade after traveling to Texas to visit facilities that house and care for children taken from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border June 21, 2018 at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The first lady is traveling to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that children taken from their families at the border were receiving from the federal government. Following public outcry and criticism from members of his own party, President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday to stop the separation of migrant children from their families, a practice the administration employed to deter illegal immigration at the U.S.-Mexico border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump is greeted before boarding a flight at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on June 12, 2018. - First Lady Melania Trump made a surprise visit to the US-Mexican border on Thursday, June 21, 2018 as her husband's administration seeks to quell a firestorm over migrant family separations. President Donald Trump first announced the trip by his wife, who will tour a non-profit social services center for migrant children, as well as a customs and border patrol processing center, according to a statement from her office. (Photo by Mandel Ngan / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
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During a June 2018 visit to migrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border, the first lady donned a $39 green parka emblazoned with the words "I really don't care, do u?" on the back. Given that it was a time of particular tension from President Trump's "zero-tolerance" immigration policy, those six words caused quite the outrage from the public. 

There have been many theories as to what the controversial outerwear might have been aimed at, or if it was merely the first lady's take on the crisis. Last fall, Melania herself said that it was worn to send a message to the media and was merely for the plane, while Omarosa maintained in her book that it was worn "to hurt Trump" after being sent to the border to "mop up her husband's mess."

However, according to The New York Times' report on Bennett's book, Melania's controversial jacket was actually a jab at her stepdaughter. 

“I believed, and still do, that the jacket was a facetious jab at Ivanka and her near-constant attempts to attach herself for positive administration talking points,” Bennett wrote, saying that Trump may take issue with Ivanka's role as a "savvy career mom" and White House senior advisor, who often departs on high-profile international trips on behalf of the administration. 

“The trips were, according to a source, too close for comfort for Melania, who thought Ivanka was invading her turf," Bennett wrote.

You can purchase the reporter's book here

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A history of Melania Trump's most controversial outfits
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A history of Melania Trump's most controversial outfits

As part of her first solo international trip as first lady, Melania visited Nairobi National Park in a white pith helmet, which drew criticism for its colonial-era past. 

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Melania Trump attended the General Debate of the 73rd session of the General Assembly at the United Nations alongside her husband. Her black dress was thought to be a slight towards President Trump as many people on the internet saw her outfit as a gesture of support for sexual assault survivors.

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The Trumps welcomed Polish President Andrzej Duda and his wife Agata Kornhauser-Duda to the White House in September. The problem? Melania was wearing a wool coat while it was still 80 degrees outside. Furthermore, she didn't remove her coat while dining inside with the Polish first lady, which Twitter deemed not the best hostess tactic. 

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Melania Trump tried her hand at gardening for the second time to plant an Eisenhower Oak at the White House in August. The $4000 skirt and sky-high Louboutin heels she wore to dig soil sent the internet aflame. 

"Melania is launching her new line of Gardening Attire, accompanied by the standard 4-inch heels," joked one Twitter user. 

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FLOTUS stepped out on August 20th in Maryland to promote her Be Best initiative and discuss cyberbullying. To the event, she wore the once-controversial pussy-bow blouse -- the same style she sported during the 2016 presidential debate after the Access Hollywood leak. 

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Arguably her most controversial outfit yet, Melania sported a jacket emblazoned with the words "I Really Don't Care Do You" to visit migrant children separated from their parents in Texas. The Zara jacket retails for $39.

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Melania arrived at POTUS' State of the Union at the start of the new year in a white Dior pantsuit. Many members of Congress chose to wear black in solidarity with sexual assault survivors and in protest of the Trump administration: Melania stood out in all white. 

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Following Ivana Trump's controversial interview in October, Melania donned an emerald green shirtdress from British brand Cefinn to an official visit to Lily's Place to visit with families affected by addiction. It's the first non-profit infant recovery center in the world. 

The dress was designed by former first lady of Britain Samantha Cameron. Is she reminding everyone of her status? 

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Alongside President Trump, FLOTUS arrived in Vegas in October to pay their respects to the 50 victims of the Las Vegas shooting. Her all-black, closed-off look drew some major criticism on Twitter. 

"I'm making a public plea to Melania Trump: stop with the sunglasses (and the heels at disaster areas)," one Twitter user wrote.

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Twitter had a lot to say about this picture of FLOTUS getting down and dirty in the garden established by former first lady Michelle Obama. 

Her $1380 Balmain shirt wasn't the most appropriate choice for the event.

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Though this photo was taken at the White House Congressional Picnic in June, the Trumps tweeted a photo from the event to wish the country a happy Labor Day the following September. 

"We are building our future with American hands, American labor, American iron, aluminum and steel," POTUS wrote. Ironically, Melania's dress was designed by Mary Katrantzou, a Greek-born British designer. Twitter had *a lot* to say. 

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Off to help Hurricane Harvey victims, Melania made headlines when she boarded Air Force One in sky-high stilettos.

"God grant me the serenity not to comment on the shoes," wrote one Twitter user.

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FLOTUS turned heads in a $51,500 floral jacket by Dolce & Gabbana for the G7 summit in Italy. 

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While visiting Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust Memorial, Melania sported a white sleeveless dress. Twitter wasn't happy with her sporting bare shoulders at the memorial.

Wrote one user, "Melania cover your arms up, show some respect."

"Geez. The lambasted Michelle Obama for baring her arms and her is Melania Trump in conservative Israel with a sleeveless dress," said another. 

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Just days after President Trump landed in hot water following the leaked Access Hollywood recordings, Melania sported a pussy bow shirt to the second presidential debates.

Read more here.

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