NY Times Admits ‘Lapse’ by Reporter for Spreading ‘Unfounded’ Melania Trump Rumor

“The comment was not intended to be public, but it was nonetheless completely inappropriate and should not have occurred,” spokesman for newspaper tells TheWrap

A New York Times reporter has received a talking-to after spreading an “unfounded rumor” about First Lady Melania Trump’s past.

In a statement provided to TheWrap, a spokesman for the Times confirmed that the unidentified reporter made a “completely inappropriate” remark about Melania Trump on Sunday to model-actress Emily Ratajkowski, and that the reporter has been spoken to by editors for the newspaper.

“At a party last night, a Times reporter who does not cover Washington or politics, referred to an unfounded rumor regarding Melania Trump. The comment was not intended to be public, but it was nonetheless completely inappropriate and should not have occurred,” the Times spokesman said. “Editors have talked to the reporter in question about the lapse.”

The statement came in response to a Twitter report posted by actress/model Emily Ratajkowski on Monday, saying that a Times reporter had referred to the First Lady as a “hooker.”

“Sat next to a journalist from the NYT last night who told me ‘Melania is a hooker.’ Whatever your politics it’s crucial to call this out for what it is: slut shaming. I don’t care about her nudes or sexual history and no one should,” Ratajkowski wrote.

The actress/model went on to add, “Gender specific attacks are disgusting sexist bullsh–.”

First Lady Trump has been plagued by suggestions that she might have worked as an escort in the past. She filed suit last year against the Daily Mail and Maryland blogger Webster Griffin Tarpley over stories saying that she might have worked as an escort before becoming First Lady.

Earlier this month, Trump settled her lawsuit against Tarpley, receiving an apology and “a substantial sum,” according to her attorney.

Trump refiled her suit against the Daily Mail, after a judge dismissed the suit she’d filed against the publication in Maryland on jurisdictional grounds.