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US drops into global press freedom index, reporter group says



  The reflection of President Trump can be seen in the sunglasses of First Lady Melania Trump.

The reflection of President Trump can be seen in the sunglasses of First Lady Melania Trump. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press)

She is either an accomplice in her husband's worst instincts or a victim of them, either fighting an anachronistic job or confidently doing exactly what she wants to do with it. Fifteen months after becoming First Lady, Melania Trump remains a mystery.

Over the course of several days ending on Tuesday, Melania Trump will have been pushed into a more visible publicity role than at any other time in her husband's presidency. It comes after a long period of relative invisibility that has not only watered down the White House tradition, but also limited its potential political benefits for a troubled government.

Following the addition of the Japanese Prime Minister and his wife to Trump's Mar-a-Lago Florida last week, Melania Trump visited the Saturday funeral of former First Lady Barbara Bush in Houston; The president stayed away. Before the service, she smiled and talked with President Obama, whom her husband had spurned for years, and, smiling again, associated her with all the former presidents and first ladies attending the funeral, a formal image.