Trump Lashes Out at Blumenthal: “He Was a Phony Vietnam Con Artist”

The president received multiple deferments during the Vietnam War.

Moments after Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) appeared on CNN’s New Day to express concern over the administration’s efforts to crack down on leaks by targeting journalists, President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Monday to blast the senator as a “phony Vietnam con artist.” 

The attack was an apparent reference to Blumenthal’s history of misleading statements regarding his war service. Like the Connecticut senator, Trump also received five military deferments that allowed him to escape service in the Vietnam War. During an interview with Howard Stern, Trump once called his sexual conquests while avoiding sexually transmitted diseases his own “personal Vietnam.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1wyTNvaDdI

Blumenthal is a frequent critic of the president and was on air Monday morning to discuss the Russia investigation and the “chilling effect” the Justice Department’s war on leakers could have on the press. The president has made a habit of using his Twitter account to take aim at his detractors shortly after they appear on cable news networks.

On Monday, Trump also continued lashing out at “fake media” outlets, including the New York Times, CNN, and the Washington Post, for reporting on the Russia scandal rather than on his administration’s successes.

In 2010, the New York Times was the first outlet to report on Blumenthal’s problematic statements about his Vietnam service during his run for the Senate.

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You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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