Melania Trump breaks from Donald Trump, applauds LeBron James' community efforts

Melania Trump released a statement Saturday acknowledging the community efforts of <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nba/players/3704/" data-ylk="slk:LeBron James">LeBron James</a> after Donald Trump lashed out at the NBA star. (AP)
Melania Trump released a statement Saturday acknowledging the community efforts of LeBron James after Donald Trump lashed out at the NBA star. (AP)

Saturday has produced an outpouring of support for LeBron James in the wake of President Donald Trump’s Twitter attack calling into question the NBA superstar’s intelligence.

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Lakers executive Jeanie Buss and former Trump opponent Hillary Clinton have joined a parade of NBA players applauding James for his community efforts that include funding and opening an Akron, Ohio public school for at-risk elementary students.

Melania Trump breaks ranks with Donald Trump

But perhaps nobody’s support stands out at much as that of First Lady Melania Trump, who broke from her husband’s obtuse criticism of James with a public statement acknowledging James’ efforts in the community.

It’s not the first time Melania has broken ranks with her husband. In June she issued a statement at odds with the Trump administration’s policy of separating families who cross the U.S. border illegally declaring that she “hates” to see children separated at the border.

There’s no reasonable room to find criticism of James spending his time and money working to educate children, and Melania, like many others, appears to have reached that conclusion in light of her husband’s Twitter statement.

Trump seized on opportunity to attack media and sports

Trump’s attack stems from James’ criticism of the president during a CNN interview with Don Lemon about the opening of his “I Promise” school.

“We’re in a position right now in America where this whole race thing is taking over,” James said. “One, because I believe our president is trying to divide us. He’s dividing us, and what I’ve noticed over the last few months is that he’s kind of used sport to kind of divide us.”

It’s not the first time James has publicly criticized Trump. The combination of James’ repeated criticism and CNN, a frequent punching bag in the president’s ongoing war on the media, appeared to be too tempting for Trump to resist as he continually seeks opportunities to drive wedges among the U.S. populous on fronts of race, culture and politics.

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