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Donald Trump ‘not thrilled’ about Melania speech flap, son says

Donald Trump Jr. arrives during roll call on the second day of the Republican National Convention on July 19, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND — Donald Trump Jr. said his father is “not thrilled” over allegations that Melania Trump lifted passages from first lady Michelle Obama’s 2008 convention speech for her own prime-time address, but by the end of Tuesday, no one had been fired.

The uproar overshadowed what otherwise should have been a celebratory day for the Trump campaign, with the New York billionaire and reality show star formally clinching the presidential nomination at the Republican convention.

Trump’s namesake son told ABC News his father was “not thrilled about the situation, but we are going to move on.”

As Mrs. Trump was delivering her speech, Jarrett Hill, a laid off television journalist watching from a Starbuck’s in Los Angeles, was struck by some phrases, and after some quick research, according to the Washington Post, posted on Twitter that passages were lifted from Mrs. Obama’s 2008 convention speech.

During the day, the Trump campaign offered various explanations for how the alleged plagiarism happened.

“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,” Jason Miller a senior communications adviser said in a statement.

Chairman Paul Manafort told CNN a different story.

“Well, there’s no cribbing of Michelle Obama’s speech. These were common words and values that she cares about her family and things like that,” he said.

“I mean, she was speaking in front of 35 million people last night, she knew that. To think that she would be cribbing Michelle Obama’s words is crazy. I mean, it’s so — I mean, this is, once again, an example of when a woman threatens Hillary Clinton, how she seeks out to demean her and take her down. It’s not going to work,” Manafort said.

Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski — forced out by Manafort — said Tuesday before speaking at a breakfast for Illinois delegates the Trump staffer responsible for the speech should be held “accountable.”

“I think Mrs. Trump is a very smart articulate woman,” Lewandowski said. “Her thoughts are her own thoughts. And I think if it was a mistake, it was at the staff level and staff should be held accountable.”

Lewandowski said the “outline of the speech” was “her own.”

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Many Illinois delegates at the early morning breakfast were not aware of the plagiarism allegations, which surfaced near midnight Monday, and others didn’t seem to care.

“I’m not concerned at all. That speech was genuine. It was from the heart. Some of the words that after being alleged as plagiarism, they’re general phrases that people use all the time,” said Eric Miller, a Trump delegate from Poplar Grove.

“I have absolutely no reason to think that she did anything intentionally and it’s simply mischaracterization.”

Illinois Republican Party Chair Tim Schneider downplayed the plagiarism allegations.

“I thought it was a marvelous speech,” Schneider said, “well delivered. I think just some staffer was lazy and didn’t do their homework and did something they shouldn’t have done.”