Melania Trump's Speech Is About Some Wonderfully Positive Campaign Her Husband Is Not Actually A Part Of
In her first major public speech since the Republican National Convention over the summer, Melania Trump will speak Thursday in Pennsylvania at a rally in support of her husband’s candidacy. Excerpts from her remarks released by the campaign in advance of the event detailed that Melania will speak about children and family, saying, “I want our children in this country, and all around the world, to live a beautiful life, to be safe and secure.” Well, I have no clue who’s campaign she’s talking about, but it sure as hell isn’t her husband’s.
This marks the first time Trump will be giving a large public address since she spoke in Cleveland at the nominating convention for her husband. It proved to be a controversial speech since it turned out to contain passages that appeared to be lifted from First Lady Michelle Obama’s Democratic Convention speech from 2008. And even though the portions of her speech pre-released suggest many similarities to her husband’s own speeches — light on policy details, heavy on rhetoric — there’s an element of kindness and hope in her speech that has been largely absent from her husband’s fiery rallies. In fact, it would be lovely if Donald’s campaign more closely reflected the sentiments found in his wife’s remarks but, perhaps unsurprisingly, the distance between the content of the speech and the reality of her husband’s campaign is vast.
Perhaps what’s most troubling about the blatant dissonance between Trump’s speech and the larger campaign is the extent to which it feels like a fluffy afterthought. Even the announcement that she would be speaking seemed to be a spur-of-the-moment decision on Donald’s part, especially since Trump, herself, appeared reportedly unaware it was happening.
And while relegating the potential future first lady to talking about love and children is hardly a new move, it stands out more potently in this election, which is heavy with compelling present and former FLOTUSes. Michelle Obama has quickly become one of the most powerful surrogates in Democratic nominee (and former FLOTUS) Hillary Clinton’s arsenal.
“We need to teach our youth American values: Kindness, respect, compassion, charity, understanding, cooperation,” says Trump. In response, I can only say: Kindness? See Alicia Machado. Respect? Judge Gonzalo Curiel. Compassion? The Wall. Charity? How about ending Obamacare. Understanding? The Muslim immigration ban. Cooperation? How about reneging on NATO?
That her speech is diametrically opposed to her husband’s positions is probably neither by accident or by design; it’s just another element of the duplicity I've come to expect from the the Donald Trump campaign.