Republican voters in Cleveland, Ohio say they're unfazed by the similarities between the convention speeches of Melania Trump and First Lady Michelle Obama. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Voters on the streets of downtown Cleveland on Tuesday (July 19) said they were unfazed by a speech given by Republican presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump's wife Melania Trump the night before that had strong similarities to a convention speech by U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama. The controversy stole the spotlight at the Republican convention on Monday, a day Trump's campaign had hoped to devote to the U.S. economy. A Slovenian-born jewelry designer and former model, Melania Trump delivered her testimonial after being introduced by her husband, who made a dramatic grand entrance, silhouetted against a white background. But a small part of her speech quickly captured all the attention. Referring to the values held by her family, it was strikingly similar to a section of Michelle Obama's speech to the Democratic convention in 2008 in support of then presidential candidate Barack Obama. A Trump campaign official suggested the similarity was the result of an error by her speech writers. Cleveland resident Anthony Price said he was not shocked by the similarities, but he thought some voters might take notice. "The controversy now that her speech was similar to First Lady Michelle Obama - it raises questions: Are they actually Republican? Or do they have Democratic sides? Are they really authentic or genuine? I think that raises a question that we have to bring to concern, if you're a Republican, or if you're a Democrat or if you're independent. Those are questions that they need to ask, people need to ask. And then hopefully, they can take that into consideration in November when people vote," Price said. But Ohio Republican voters Donna and Carol Cecchi said the controversy was overblown. "OK, let's look at it this way: maybe she never heard the speech of the other one and things came to her mind and she put them down, which, with her ethnic background, I think she did a very good job with it - explaining what's going to be with her husband," Donna Cecchi said. "My gut reaction is that they're talking about that because they don't want to talk about all of the power points the Republicans hit, period. How bad Clinton's been and how bad Obama's been. And I don't think that's a big deal. It was first lady-esque. Big deal," said Carol Cecchi. House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan, the top U.S. elected Republican, was to formally put Trump's name forward later on Tuesday to be the party's presidential nominee for the Nov. 8 election.