President Trump slams media outlets over Melania facelift rumors

President Donald Trump on Monday addressed widespread rumors surrounding first lady Melania Trump's recent 27-day hiatus from public appearances.

During a campaign rally in South Carolina for Governor Henry McMaster, Trump praised his wife, saying she was doing "fine" despite media speculation that her brief disappearance was because she was recovering from a facelift.

"She had an operation a few weeks ago, kidney operation," Trump told the crowd. "And she's gonna be great." 

"But [the media] had all kinds of projections," he continued. "They said she got a facelift. No. I would let you know. They couldn't hide that one for long, right?"

Trump previously took to Twitter on June 6 to criticize media outlets for their treatment of the first lady during her recovery period.

"The Fake News Media has been so unfair, and vicious, to my wife and our great First Lady, Melania," wrote the president.

"During her recovery from surgery they reported everything from near death, to facelift, to left the W.H. (and me) for N.Y. or Virginia, to abuse. All Fake, she is doing really well!"

13 PHOTOS
Melania Trump visits border detention facility
See Gallery
Melania Trump visits border detention facility
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump arrives at McAllen Miller International Airport to attend a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump arrives at McAllen Miller International Airport to attend a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump takes part in a roundtable discussion at Luthern Social Services of the South's Upbring New Hope Children Center in McAllen, Texas on June 21, 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)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump walks through the facility with program director Rogelio de la Cerda Jr. after a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump takes part in a roundtable discussion at Luthern Social Services of the South's Upbring New Hope Children Center in McAllen, Texas on June 21, 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)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump walks through the facility after a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
US First Lady Melania Trump takes part in a roundtable discussion at Luthern Social Services of the South's Upbring New Hope Children Center in McAllen, Texas on June 21, 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)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump walks through the facility after a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump participates in a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump walks through the facility after a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump participates in a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump participates in a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
MCALLEN, TX - JUNE 21: U.S. first lady Melania Trump participates in a round table discussion with doctors and social workers at the Upbring New Hope Childrens Center operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South and contracted with the Department of Health and Human Services June 21, 2018 in McAllen, Texas. The first lady traveled to Texas to see first hand the condition and treatment that migrant children taken from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border are 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 border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Melania's notable public absence first began on May 10, when she stood by the president's side as the pair welcomed home Americans who had been imprisoned in North Korea.

The White House released a statement on May 14, saying that the first lady had been hospitalized to undergo a procedure to treat a benign kidney condition. The next day, President Trump took to Twitter to share that the surgery went well and that his wife would be discharged from the hospital in a few days.

Five days later on May 19, the president shared that Melania had returned home to the White House and was "feeling and doing really well."

However, after the first lady skipped out on a handful of important events, conspiracy theories began to swirl about the reason for her prolonged absence.

Amid intense media scrutiny, the official FLOTUS Twitter account released a statement on May 30 to assure the public that Melania was doing just fine.

"I see the media is working overtime speculating where I am & what I'm doing," the account tweeted. "Rest assured, I'm here at the @WhiteHouse w my family, feeling great, & working hard on behalf of children & the American people!"

However, the plan ended up backfiring, as Twitter users were quick to note that the tone of the statement, as well as the punctuation, sounded nothing like the first lady's typical tweeting style. 

Some even went as far as to say that they believed the message looked more like it was written by President Trump than his wife, stoking even more concerns. 

On June 6, Melania finally appeared in public for the first time in 27 days, joining her husband for a briefing on hurricane preparedness at FEMA Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Read Full Story