Did Melania Trump Plagiarize Michelle Obama’s 2008 Convention Speech?

Following the speech of Donald Trump’s wife, Melania, on Monday night at the Republican National Convention, social media commenters were quick to note the striking similarities between Melania Trump’s words and those of First Lady Michelle Obama’s from the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

The two speeches, ironically on the importance of hard work, use the same phrases “work hard for what you want in life,” “your word is your bond” and “we want our children in this nation…to know the limits of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”

See the excerpts below:

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Melania Trump’s speech from 2016:

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. They taught and showed me values and morals in their daily life.

That is a lesson 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 is the only limits to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.

Michelle Obama’s speech from 2008:

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.

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.

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When asked about the speech during an interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer, Melania Trump said, ” I wrote it…with as little help as possible.”

Her husband, Donald Trump, who walked out on the stage to Queen’s “We Are the Champions” before introducing his wife to the Cleveland audience, later tweeted that her “speech and demeanor were absolutely incredible.”

Trump later issued another statement about the controversial speech, seemingly putting the blame on her writers: “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,” the statement read. “Melania’s immigrant experience and love for America shone through her in her speech, which made it such a success.”

The similarities were first noticed by L.A. interior designer and journalist Jarrett Hill.

Watch a side-by-side comparison of the speeches below:

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