US Politics

'Fake Melania' conspiracy theory catches fire on social media after strange image of the First Lady emerges

This image of Melania Trump has reignited conspiracy theories that she uses a body double. Source: Twitter

A conspiracy theory that Melania Trump uses lookalike body doubles is catching fire on social media after a strange photo of the First Lady and US President emerged.

The photo, taken last week, shows the US President and First Lady boarding Marine One at the White House before making their way to Nashville for the presidential debate.

In the image, Melania Trump is pictured smiling and wearing dark glasses that cover much of her face.

The photograph has reignited a conspiracy theory that the First Lady dodges public appearances by hiring a body double.

Some claimed the First Lady didn’t look like herself in the image and that her smile is completely dissimilar to how it appears in other photos. 

Melania and Donald Trump at the White House.

“Notice the two front teeth. Melania’s are more squared…THAT AIN’T HER in the other photo. #FakeMelania,” one person tweeted.

“Not just the teeth… If you look at the eyebrows, the hairs are splayed at the start (closest to nasal bridge) – whereas Melania’s are not. Also on the upper lip, there is no prominent commissure – whereas Melania does,” another user replied.

While another person joked, “Folks, there is a body double running around for Melania. Know how I know? She’s smiling.”

“The only thing I'll miss from this administration is them swapping in new Melanias and just pretending we won't notice like a 4-year-old with a guppy,” another user added.

But the theory is easily disproven when compared to other photos of the First Lady taken on the same day.

The baseless theory began in October 2017 when the President spoke to reporters about hurricane relief for Puerto Rico. Twitter users zoomed in on footage of the First Lady, claiming the woman was not Melania and instead was an imposter. 

Donald and Melania Trump travels to Nashville, Tennessee, for the final presidential debate

The theory reared its head again during a presidential trip to Florida in 2019 and another to Ohio in 2018.

Last March, President Trump tweeted, “The Fake News photoshopped pictures of Melania, then propelled conspiracy theories that it’s actually not her by my side in Alabama and other places. They are only getting more deranged with time!”

The First Lady cancelled a trip to Pennsylvania last week over a “lingering cough” before joining the family at the debate on Friday. 

“Mrs. Trump continues to feel better every day following her recovery from COVID-19, but with a lingering cough, and out of an abundance of caution, she will not be traveling today,” her chief of staff Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.