Madeleine Westerhout and President Donald Trump. Picture: Supplied
Madeleine Westerhout and President Donald Trump. Picture: Supplied

Trump insider quits over leak scandal

PRESIDENT Donald Trump's personal assistant abruptly resigned from her post after it was revealed she shared information about the president's family with members of the press, according to reports in the US.

Madeleine Westerhout stepped down after Mr Trump found out that she disclosed the personal details to reporters while they were staying in hotels near his Bedminster New Jersey golf resort, the New York Times reported.

Madeleine Westerhout has stepped down as personal assistant to President Trump. Picture: Facebook
Madeleine Westerhout has stepped down as personal assistant to President Trump. Picture: Facebook

Ms Westerhout also shared information about White House operations with the reporters, according to CNN.

The president was on vacation at the time, according to the New York Post.

The 28-year-old woman is now considered a "separated employee" and will not be allowed to return to the White House, the Times reported.

Ms Westerhout had been Mr Trump's assistant since the first day of his presidency, but was not always an ally of the president.

Mitt Romney. Picture: AP
Mitt Romney. Picture: AP

She previously worked as a staffer for Mitt Romney's 2012 campaign and reportedly broke down and sobbed when Mr Trump was elected in 2016.

News and information website heavy.com said Ms Westerhout had been one of the President's most trusted confidants since 2016. She started working for Mr Trump as his "greeter girl" welcoming dignitaries visiting the President at Trump Tower while she was still assistant to Republican National Committee Chief of Staff Katie Walsh.

 

Madeleine Westerhout ‘is the secret’, Mr Trump once said. Picture: Facebook
Madeleine Westerhout ‘is the secret’, Mr Trump once said. Picture: Facebook

She quickly became part of the President's inner circle. "Madeleine is the key," Trump told the I in 2018. "She's the secret." The message was clear: If you wanted to talk to President Trump, you went through Madeleine Westerhout.

According to a report from Politico, for the past six months, Ms Westerhout tried to "expand the boundaries of her job to encompass a broader set of tasks and to include foreign travel".

 

An anonymous White House adviser told Politico that Westerhout tried to act like a "de facto chief of staff" which "irked several White House officials and Cabinet secretaries who thought she should stick to her primary task of serving as the president's personal secretary with a desk just outside the Oval Office".

The unnamed adviser called the latest incident where Ms Westerhout shared details about the President's personal life "the final straw".