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Bette Midler Under Fire for Mocking Melania's Accent

Newser — Evann Gastaldo

Bette Midler is backtracking after mocking the first lady's accent during Melania Trump's speech Tuesday at the Republican National Convention. "Oh, God. She still can’t speak English," Midler tweeted, one in a long series of Melania slams that also included, "#beBest is back! A UGE bore! She can speak several words in a few languages. Get that illegal alien off the stage!" Uproar ensued, with critics hailing from both sides of the aisle, the Los Angeles Times reports.

For example: "You don’t have to like Melania Trump— I don’t either," tweeted Rachel Zegler, soon to star in Steven Spielberg's West Side Story. "But the ability to ‘speak English’ does not measure one’s intelligence. At all." Zegler added that 21% of US residents speak a language other than English at home.

On Wednesday, Midler responded.

"Well, all hell has broken loose because I said Melania 'still can’t speak English' last night," she tweeted. "I was wrong to make fun of her accent. America is made up people who speak with all kinds of accents, and they are all welcomed always." Fox News notes the statement stopped short of an apology.

Midler said she was trying to point out the Trump administration's own stance on immigration, including the practice of separating and detaining migrant families at the border.

On Tuesday night, she had said, "Just giving them a taste of their own immigrant bashing medicine. I guess they’re not keen."

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