Donald Trump's campaign has acknowledged that Melania Trump's speech on Monday at the Republican National Convention used identical phrasing as a speech from Michelle Obama in 2008.
The admission came in a written statement (viewable below in its entirety) on Wednesday from Meredith McIver, the writer who worked with Melania on the speech. McIver identified herself as an "in-house staff writer for the Trump Organization" and a friend of the Trump family.
"This was my mistake, and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as to Mrs. Obama," McIver wrote. "No harm was meant."
McIver explained that she asked Melania about her inspirations and the message she wanted to convey during her July 18 prime-time speech at the convention in Cleveland, where her husband officially because the Republican presidential nominee on Tuesday.
McIver said that Melania read a passage from Michelle Obama's 2008 speech given when her husband President Barack Obama was running for his first term. McIver said she took notes and later used the phrasing in the speech, failing to check Michelle's words for any similarities.
During the speech, at least two lines appear to be nearly identical to Michelle's 2008 speech with similar phrasing used as well.
McIver says she attempted to submit her resignation on Tuesday, but Trump rejected it because "people make innocent mistakes."
"I asked to put out this statement because I did not like seeing the way this was distracting from Mr. Trump's historic campaign for president and Melania's beautiful message and presentation," she said.
Social media users caught wind of the similarities and blasted the potential future first lady, accusing her of plagiarism. The Trump campaign was quick to shift the blame and found a way to focus in on Hillary Clinton.
"It's just another example, as far as we're concerned, that when Hillary Clinton is threatened by a female, the first thing she does is try to destroy the person," Trump advisor Paul Manafort said in response.
"Certainly there is no feeling on [Melania's] part that she did it," Manafort said. "What she did is use words that are common words."
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