CNN contributor April Ryan was not impressed with Melania Trump’s “Be Best” campaign, saying that the first lady was not “culturally American.”
“This is a first lady who is not culturally American, but she is learning the ways,” Ryan told “OutFront” host Erin Burnett on Monday evening of the campaign.
The “Be Best” campaign, which was launched at the White House on Monday, will focus on children, specifically curbing opioid abuse and cyberbullying.
“This is not just an American issue. These are not just American issues. These are international issues. Cyberbullying is an international issue. Social media is international and also the opioid addiction issue, so it’s not just here, but it’s abroad as well” said Ryan, who went on to argue — as many others have — that Trump might not be the best representative of the campaign given her husband’s well-known history of cyberbullying.
“She’s well aware of his cyberbullying,” Ryan added. “He’s considered by some, well many I would say in different sectors, one of the biggest bullies.”
The clip was first flagged by the Washington Free Beacon.
In a statement from the Rose Garden on Monday afternoon, the first lady explained the initiative.
“As a mother and as first lady, it concerns me that in today’s fast-paced and ever-connected world, children can be less prepared to express or manage their emotions and oftentimes turn to forms of destructive or addictive behavior such as bullying, drug addiction or even suicide,” she said.
“I feel strongly that as adults we can and should be best at educating our children about the importance of a healthy and balanced life.”
Melania Trump was born in Slovenia and became an American citizen in 2006. It’s unclear what Ryan meant by the comment. CNN did not immediately respond to a request for clarification from TheWrap.