First Lady Melania Trump announced on Monday that she is going to take on renovating the White House Rose Garden, located by the Oval Office on the West Wing. Melania plans for the garden to look more like the original that was built under former President John F. Kennedy.

Melania gave a statement, “The very act of planting a garden involves hard work and hope in the possibility of a bright future. Preserving the history and beauty of the White House and its grounds is a testament to our nation’s commitment to the care of this landscape and our dedication to American ideals, safeguarding them for our children and their children for generations to come.”

She tweeted, “Even in the most difficult times, the @WhiteHouse Rose Garden has stood as a symbol of strength & continuity. Today, it is my pleasure to announce our plans to renew & restore this iconic space so that we preserve its history & beauty for generations to come.”

President Donald Trump had been frequently using the Rose Garden as a space to hold press conferences outdoors during the coronavirus pandemic, as the virus is less likely to spread outside. Renovations made to the garden would require forfeiting use of the space. 

Usually, renovations to the White House are made in August when the first family goes on vacation. In both August 2017 and 2018, renovations were made by the Trump family while they stayed in Bedminster, New Jersey.

Many have been critical of Melania’s decision to proceed with renovations during the coronavirus pandemic. 

One Twitter user wrote, “In order to mitigate the suffering caused by COVID-19 and ensure that states have all the PPE & testing/tracing elements they so desperately need, Melania Trump will be revamping the Rose Garden and Trump will be golfing and tweeting.”

Another said, “With Nearly 150,000 dead from coronavirus, 18 Million unemployed, and unemployment benefits ending, Melania will revamp the Rose Garden as her husband does nothing to alleviate the pain and suffering.”

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