Some critics were quick to point out similarities between Melania’s speech and Michelle Obama‘s 2008 speech at the Democratic National Convention.
“From a young age my parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say and keep your promise; that you treat people with respect,” Melania said on Monday. “They taught and showed me values and morals in their daily life.”
She continued: “That is a lesson that I continue to pass along to our son, and we 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 your willingness to work for them.”
Many pointed out that the chunk of her speech is comparable to Obama’s which reads, “And 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.”
Obama continued, “And Barack and I set out to build lives guided by these values, and pass them on to the next generation. Because 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.”
In an MSNBC interview prior to the RNC, Donald Trump and Melania spoke with Matt Lauer, as the former model proclaimed that she was responsible for the speech.
“I read once over it and that’s all,” Melania told Lauer after he asked if she’d practiced the speech. “Because I wrote it with as little help as possible. I’m excited.”
Despite the backlash, Trump took to Twitter saying that he was “very proud” of his wife after the night.
“It was truly and honor to introduce my wife, Melania. Her speech and demeanor were absolutely incredible,” he wrote. “Very proud! #GOPConvention”
Although he did not address the accusations about Melania’s speech being plagiarized, Trump has commended Obama’s speaking skills in the past, tweeting in 2012 that she delivered a “very good speech–and under great pressure Dems should be proud!”
Since the commonalities were pointed out, a handful of commentators took to Twitter to offer their comments on the situation.
Jon Favreau, President Obama’s former speechwriter, acknowledged the resemblance, but later added that there were bigger issues to focus on.
“Holy s—. They’re nearly identical. Someone is seriously fired,” he tweeted, adding, “Tbh, I was more offended by just about every other speech than Melania’s plagiarized paragraphs.”
Television writer and director Nell Scovell retweeted the video in which Melania takes credit for the speech and followed with a series of tweets criticizing the mother of one.
“All Melania needed to do was speak from the heart. She didn’t,” Scovell wrote. “Or maybe she couldn’t. Either way, she missed the layup #CrookedMelania.”
Meanwhile, actor Jesse Williams spearheaded the hashtage “Famous Melania Trump Quotes,” as he tweeted the famous words of others, including Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream,” Beyoncé’s “I got hot sauce in my bag. Swag,” and Nina Simone’s “It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day and I’m feeling good.”
But Jason Miller, Senior Communications Advisor for Trump, released a statement defending Melania’s speech on Monday night, saying: “In writing her beautiful speech, Melania’s team of writers took notes on her life s inspirations, and in some instances included fragments that reflected her own thinking. Melania’s immigrant experience and love for America shone through in her speech, which made it such a success.”