Mrs. Trump’s speech: Writer’s statement keeps flap going

From The Associated Press:

CLEVELAND (AP) — Seeking to put out a political fire, a Trump Organization staff writer took the blame Wednesday for the plagiarism controversy that has threatened to overshadow Donald Trump’s triumphant Republican National Convention.

The nation is to get its first good look Wednesday night at Trump’s vice presidential pick, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, as he addresses the convention. But the noise surrounding Melania Trump’s Monday night speech was all but drowning it out.

After the campaign spent 36 hours dismissing the dustup as absurd – and any similarities with a 2008 Michelle Obama speech as coincidence – Meredith McIver said Wednesday she had included passages from Mrs. Obama’s speech in Mrs. Trump’s address. McIver said she offered her resignation over the incident, but Donald Trump rejected it.

“This was my mistake and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as Mrs. Obama. No harm was meant,” McIver said in a statement released by the Trump Organization. “Mr. Trump told me people make innocent mistakes and that we learn and grow from experiences.”

McIver identified herself as a staff writer at the Trump Organization, not a campaign employee. But her statement was the first sign of the campaign acknowledging the similarities between the speeches as more than just coincidence. The campaign spent much of Tuesday dismissing the plagiarism charges as politically motivated and overblown.

Trump arrived in Cleveland Wednesday afternoon, in his helicopter on the shore of Lake Erie. He was greeted with handshakes from Pence and hugs from his grown children. Mrs. Trump, who flew back to New York after her speech, was due to return Thursday, along with the youngest Trump, 10-year-old Barron.

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