Melania Trump has appeared to have lifted a chunk of her speech during the opening night of the Republican National Convention from First Lady Michelle Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic convention, NBC News reported on Tuesday.
However, it remained unclear exactly what was behind the close similarities between the two speeches, but Melania, wife of Republican Party’s presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump, said on NBC’s Today Show that she wrote the speech largely on her own.
“I read once over it, and that’s all. Because I wrote it…with as little help as possible,” she told host Matt Lauer, when asked if she had practiced the speech.
A two-paragraph section of the speech on Monday night in which Melania Trump talks about growing up valuing hard work and passing on those values to her children closely mirrored Michelle Obama’s 2008 speech, which was seen as a breakout moment for the future first lady and a humanising moment for her husband, President Brack Obama.
About halfway through her speech, Melania Trump declared, “My parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life. That your work is your bond, and you do what you say and keep your promise. That you treat people with respect,” NBC News said.
Michelle Obama said in hers “Barack and I were raised with so many of the same values: that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say you’re going to do; that you treat people with dignity and respect, even if you don’t know them, and even if you don’t agree with them.”
Melania Trump went on to emphasise the need to “pass those lessons on to the many generations to follow, because we want our children in this nation to know that the only limit to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and the willingness to work for them.”
It’s a close copy of the next line in Michelle Obama’s speech “We want our children – and all children in this nation – to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”
The Trump campaign however, did not respond to the allegations, and Trump only offered praise for his wife’s address on Twitter, NBC News noted.
“It was truly an honor to introduce my wife, Melania. Her speech and demeanor were absolutely incredible. Very proud!” he tweeted.
The convention started on Monday in Cleveland, Ohio and will run till Thursday with some 5,000 delegates representing the country’s 50 states, the District of Colombia and five US territories present to determine Trump’s future to lead the country.