- The Washington Times - Monday, January 11, 2021

First lady Melania Trump said Monday she is “disappointed and disheartened” by the deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol, and complained of “unwarranted personal attacks, and false misleading accusations on me” related to the attack.

In her first public comments on the storming of the Capitol by Trump supporters five days ago, Mrs. Trump said the nation “must heal in a civil manner.”

“Make no mistake about it, I absolutely condemn the violence that has occurred on our nation’s Capitol. Violence is never acceptable,” she said.

The first lady said she is praying for the families of six people who died during the attack or soon afterward, including two Capitol police officers.

“I am disappointed and disheartened with what happened last week,” Mrs. Trump said. “I find it shameful that surrounding these tragic events there has been salacious gossip, unwarranted personal attacks, and false misleading accusations on me – from people who are looking to be relevant and have an agenda. This time is solely about healing our country and its citizens. It should not be used for personal gain.”

It wasn’t clear what accusations she referred to, although her former friend Stephanie Wolkoff wrote in an op-ed last week that Mrs. Trump was complicit “in the destruction of America.”

A few days after several social media platforms banned the president, the first lady also said she is proud of “our freedom to express our viewpoints without persecution.”

“With that in mind, I would like to call on the citizens of this country to take a moment, pause, and look at things from all perspectives,” she said. “I implore people to stop the violence, never make assumptions based on the color of a person’s skin or use differing political ideologies as a basis for aggression and viciousness. We must listen to one another, focus on what unites us, and rise above what divides us.”

Congressional Democrats plan to introduce articles of impeachment on Monday accusing the president of inciting the riot by stirring up tens of thousands of supporters at a rally in Washington last Wednesday.

“It is inspiring to see that so many have found a passion and enthusiasm in participating in an election, but we must not allow that passion to turn to violence,” Mrs. Trump said. “Our path forward is to come together, find our commonalities, and be the kind and strong people that I know we are.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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