After almost two days of media scrutiny, the Trump Organization employee who wrote the speech for which Melania Trump was accused of plagiarism has come forward.
Meredith McIver wrote a detailed letter to the public released this afternoon. In it she declared she was the one who made the “mistake” of including un-cited portions of First Lady Michelle Obama’s 2008 Democratic National Convention speech in the address she wrote for Mrs. Trump, who delivered it Monday on the first night of the Republican National Convention
“In working with Melania Trump on her recent First Lady speech, we discussed many people who inspired her and messages she wanted to share with the American people,” McIver wrote. “A person she has always liked is Michelle Obama.
“Over the phone, she read me some passages from Mrs. Obama’s speech as examples,” McIver continued. “I wrote them down and later included some of the phrasing in the draft that ultimately became the final speech. I did not check Mrs. Obama’s speeches. This was my mistake … no harm was meant.”
McIver said she tried to quit, but Donald Trump declined her resignation.
“Mr. Trump told me that people make innocent mistakes and that we learn and grow from these experiences,” she wrote.
Here’s the full text of McIver’s statement:
For the last day and a half, Trump surrogates have denied that Mrs. Trump’s speech plagiarized Michelle Obama’s, brushing off the undeniable similarities as “common language” and a coincidence.
Republican National Convention chief strategist Sean Spicer told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Tuesday Mrs. Trump’s words could have come from Twilight Sparkle of the 1980s cartoon My Little Pony.
“We’re talking about 70 words, three passages,” Spicer said. “”If we want to take a bunch of phrases and run them through a Google and say, ‘Hey, who else has said them,’ I can do that in five minutes,” Spicer said.
Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort denied the plagiarism allegations in a CNN New Day morning show shootout with co-host Chris Cuomo, calling the accusations, “crazy.”
“What she did was use words that are common words,” Manafort said.