On Monday, Connecticut Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal appeared on CNN and voiced support for continuing Robert Mueller’s investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government during last year's election.
The segment wasn’t particularly noteworthy, and probably wouldn’t have garnered any national attention at all if it weren’t for Trump’s reaction.
Breaking his short-lived Twitter silence that was in tact since his new chief of staff John Kelly took office, Trump went on a tirade against Blumenthal, Tweeting a series of ad hominem attacks about his military career.
The tirade began about 15 minutes after he claimed he wasn’t on a vacation and was working very hard, and very shortly after the CNN segment aired. The first Tweet said, "Interesting to watch Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut talking about hoax Russian collusion when he was a phony Vietnam con artist!"
Trump later followed up with two more Tweets that read “Never in U.S.history has anyone lied or defrauded voters like Senator Richard Blumenthal. He told stories about his Vietnam battles and conquests, how brave he was, and it was all a lie. He cried like a baby and begged for forgiveness like a child. Now he judges collusion?"
It is true that on one occasion in 2010, Blumenthal referenced "the days that I served in Vietnam," even though he was in the military during the Vietnam war, but didn’t actually serve in Vietnam. That was a misleading statement, it was shameful and it was wrong.
NBC News said its analysis found no evidence that Blumenthal had bragged about being in battles in Vietnam, nor that he had cried about the controversy during his 2010 campaign.
First of all, Blumenthal’s past statements about his military service are obviously completely irrelevant to his current opinions about the Russia scandal. Trying to use a completely unrelated past controversy to undermine that opinion is just logically fallacious and ridiculous.
But the biggest take away here, yet again, is the incredible, shameless hypocrisy on display from Trump here. This is a man who received five deferments from the Vietnam draft, presumably at least in part because of the power of his rich father.
His fifth deferment was because he had “bone spurs” in his heels. In an interview with the New York Times last year, he called the condition “minor” and “temporary,” and in a 2015 press conference, he forgot which heal had been diagnosed before his campaign clarified it was both of them.
And after squirming his way out of service, Trump has the audacity to joke that trying not contract STD’s was his “personal Vietnam.” Combined with his other insulting comments, like saying John McCain isn’t a war hero because he got captured and his off the cuff remark about how he “always wanted to get the purple heart,” Trump has consistently shown disrespect for those who have experienced combat and all the unimaginable hardships it can cause. And for some reason that I cannot understand, he seems to get a free pass on it.
But Trump’s words and actions regarding military service paint a clear picture. He’s a shameless coward and an absolute, bottom of the barrel pond scum hypocrite.