Blumenthal Hits Back at Trump for 'Nonsense' Personal Attacks About His Military Service

Posted: Oct 03, 2018 4:45 PM
Blumenthal Hits Back at Trump for 'Nonsense' Personal Attacks About His Military Service

On Monday, President Trump defended Brett Kavanaugh in part by tearing apart the Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee. He had particularly choice words for Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), who claimed that placing Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court would forever be a "stain" on the institution. He has also stated that Trump's prior reluctance to call an FBI probe into the allegations against the nominee was "tantamount to a cover-up." So, Trump took that as an opportunity to zing Blumenthal this week for fabricating his military service back in 2010.

In a campaign speech Monday, Trump gave Blumenthal a new infamous nickname, "Da Nang Blumenthal."

"You have the great Vietnam War hero - who didn't go to Vietnam - [Sen. Richard] Blumenthal," Trump said. "How about Blumenthal? We call him 'Da Nang Blumenthal.'"

Blumenthal said the president is spewing "nonsense."

Snopes had different facts, noting that the claim Blumenthal misrepresented his military service was "mostly true." 

Back in 2010, when Blumenthal was running for the Senate, he told a group of veterans he had served in Vietnam.

“We have learned something important since the days that I served in Vietnam,” Blumenthal said. “And you exemplify it. Whatever we think about the war, whatever we call it — Afghanistan or Iraq — we owe our military men and women unconditional support.”

Those remarks became pretty awkward after The New York Times obtained Blumenthal's Selective Service Record. The document showed he received five separate draft deferments while a college student and then, when those deferments ran out, secured a spot in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves, which was not in Vietnam. 

The Times exposed the misleading statement in a piece entitled, "Richard Blumenthal's Words on Vietnam Service Differ from History."

The senator later admitted he had "misspoken." 

Trump noted it was more than just a mere misstatement, and it's especially relevant now that he's trying to assassinate Kavanaugh's character.

"For 15 years as the attorney general of Connecticut, he went around telling war stories," Trump told the crowd. "'People dying left and right -- but my plattoon marched forward!' He was never in Vietnam. It was a lie. And then he's up there saying, 'We want the truth from Judge Kavanaugh.' And you're getting the truth from Judge Kavanaugh."