“Most recently, my heart goes out to: Air Force Veteran, Ashli (Babbitt), Benjamin (Phillips), Kevin Greeson, (Roseanne) Boyland, and Capitol Police Officers, Brian Sicknick and Howard Liebengood. I pray for their families comfort and strength during this difficult time,” she said.
“I find it shameful that surrounding these tragic events there has been salacious gossip, unwarranted personal attacks, and false misleading accusations on me — from people who are looking to be relevant and have an agenda. This time is solely about healing our country and its citizens. It should not be used for personal gain,” the first lady, whose “Be Best” platform centers on civility and kindness, said in the post.
Trump then condemned the events of last week: “Make no mistake about it, I absolutely condemn the violence that has occurred on our Nation’s Capitol. Violence is never acceptable,” she wrote.
Short of casting any responsibility on the President, the first lady instead euphemistically described what led to the events as “passion and enthusiasm.”
“It is inspiring to see that so many have found a passion and enthusiasm in participating in an election, but we must not allow that passion to turn to violence,” she said.
Her disinterest in addressing the country was indicative of being “checked out,” said another White House source, who added, “she just isn’t in a place mentally or emotionally anymore where she wants to get involved.”
With the absence of Grisham, who aided Trump in speechwriting and communications, it was not immediately clear how the statement came together, though there were multiple examples of striking similarities between passages of the post and Trump’s August 2020 speech to the Republican National Committee.
“My husband and I have visited many places that have been affected by natural disasters and we are deeply moved by the strength of the people who have lost everything and the kindness of neighbors and communities. The common thread in all of these challenging situations is the unwavering resolve to help one another,” Trump said from the Rose Garden during the Republican National Convention in August.
On Monday, she wrote: “Our country’s strength and character have revealed themselves in the communities that have been impacted by natural disasters and throughout this terrible pandemic that has affected all of us. The common thread in all of these challenging situations is American’s unwavering resolve to help one another.”
In August: “It has been inspiring to see what the people of our great nation will do for one another, especially when we are at our most fragile.”
And on Monday: “As your First Lady, it has been inspiring to witness firsthand what the people of our great Nation will do for one another, especially when we are at our most vulnerable.”
Those similarities come over four years after Trump was widely criticized for plagiarizing passages from then-first lady Michelle Obama during Trump’s 2016 RNC remarks.
This story has been updated with additional context on the first lady’s statement.