WH sidesteps Melania Trump speechwriter controversy

WH sidesteps Melania Trump speechwriter controversy
© Greg Nash
 
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“Obviously in 2008, Mrs. Obama spoke movingly in her own words about her life story, her values,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters. “I’m confident that in the future, aspiring first ladies or potential first husbands would draw on the same kinds of sentiments to advocate for their spouse.”
 
Earnest said he was not sure if the president or first lady were aware of the statement from Trump’s speechwriter, Meredith McIver. 
 
He added that the fact that Melania Trump received "such a strong review of her speech based on reflection of the same kinds of values that were included in Mrs. Obama's speech ... is an indication that the country's got a lot of common ground, even in spite of the political divisions that are on display at the convention."
   
Earnest had previously declined to comment on the plagiarism controversy surrounding the Monday night speech at the Republican National Convention. But his Wednesday remarks came shortly after McIver publicly took responsibility for copying parts of Obama's speech. 
 
 
McIver said that Trump’s wife told her she was inspired by Michelle Obama and her 2008 convention speech during the course of drafting her own remarks. 
 
“I did not check Mrs. Obama’s speeches,” McIver said in a statement. “This was my mistake, and I feel terrible for the chaos that have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as to Mrs. Obama. No harm was meant.”