Melania Trump used, “common words and values,” in a Republican National Convention speech that paralleled remarks by Michelle Obama in 2008, and to think that the address was plagiarized is “crazy,” Trump campaign Chairman Paul Manafort said Tuesday morning.
“There’s no cribbing Michelle Obama’s speech,” Manafort told CNN. “These are common words and values, that she cares about her family. Things like that. I mean she was speaking in front of 35 million people last night. She knew that. To think that she would be cribbing Michele Obama’s words is crazy.”
The story has dominated coverage of the first day of the Cleveland convention and overshadowed one of Melania Trump’s first major speaking appearances.
The wife of the presumptive Republican nominee was initially praised for her poise and delivery, but the response quickly shifted when several commentators pointed out that whole passages of Melania Trump’s address, the headline event of the convention’s opening night, echoed those in Michelle Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
Donald Trump, famous for toppling heads on his reality show, has no plans to fire anyone this time, Manafort said.
“Who takes the fall for cribbing Michele Obama’s speech in 2008?” CNN anchor Chris Cuomo asked. “Who’s fault is that?”
Manafort said the passages were not lifted and suggested the criticism was planted by presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
“This is once again an example of when a woman threatens Hillary Clinton, she seeks out through demeanor and to take her down. It’s not going to work,” he said.