Plagiarism row as Melania tries to show husband Donald Trump’s softer side

Donald Trump’s wife, Melania, in her first major political speech on Monday, portrayed her husband as a talented, compassionate and unrelenting leader who would unify rather than divide the country if elected to the White House. The Slovenian-born jewellery designer and former model delivered the speech, which some have accused of lifting from one given by Michelle Obama in 2008, to a cheering crowd at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland after a one-minute introduction from Trump. The presumptive Republican nominee made a dramatic entrance, silhouetted against a white background, to the accompaniment of Queen’s 1977 rock anthem, “We Are the Champions”.

What I did for New York, Donald Trump will do for America!

Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani

“I have been with Donald for 18 years and I have been aware of his love for this country since we first met,” the aspiring first lady told the convention. “He’s tough when he has to be, but he’s also kind and fair and caring. Donald wants prosperity for all Americans,” she said, reading from a teleprompter, as people applauded. Her roughly 15-minute speech was a bid to soften the image of the New York businessman-turned-politician, who has been accused of bigotry and callousness for his calls to suspend Muslim immigration and deport millions of undocumented immigrants if elected. He has also been criticized for insults directed at women, political opponents and journalists. A portion of her speech, referring to the values held by her family, closely resembled part of a speech given by Michelle Obama at the Democratic convention in 2008.