Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Speechwriter takes fall for Melania Trump's plagiarism, says her offer to quit was refused

Mark Z. Barabak

The in-house staff writer did it.
After more than two days of evasion, denials and contradictory explanations, the Trump campaign released a statement Wednesday – "to whom it may concern" – ascribing the plagiarized passages in Melanie Trump's convention speech to a scribe working for his corporate operation.
"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,” said Meredith McIver, who described herself as a longtime and admirer of the Trump family. “A person she always liked is Michelle Obama.”
By McIver’s account, Melania Trump read her some passages from Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic convention and they inadvertently made their way into the final draft that she delivered Monday at the GOP’s gathering in Cleveland.
“This was my mistake and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as Mrs. Obama,” McIver said. “No harm was meant.”
She said she offered her resignation to Donald Trump, the Republican nominee, as well as his family, but it was rejected. “Mr. Trump told me that people make innocent mistakes and that we learn and grow these experiences.”
McIver’s account was one of several explanations offered by the Trump campaign and its representatives, including denial that any plagiarism had taken place. Before the controversy erupted, Melania told NBC she had written virtually the entire speech by herself.

NYT: Speechwriter takes responsibility

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