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Trump slams John McCain's war record but was Trump a draft dodger

Today in Ames, Iowa, Donald Trump caused a ruckus when he said Arizona Sen. John McCain  "is not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured."

McCain was a Navy pilot who was shot down over Vietnam and spent five years as a POW. He was frequently tortured. 

Trump later said, "I’m with the veterans all the time,” he said. “I consider them heroes."

Some of his GOP rivals for the 2016 presidential nomination are leaping on Trump's remarks with a grand show of outrage. 

Of course, Trump's remarks begs the question of all the candidates: did you serve in the military and if not, why not?

Crowley Political Report explored this question about Trump in April 2011. At the time, Trump was threatening to run for president and often made himself sound like fearless military leader.

Here's what we reported then:

Did Donald Trump Avoid the Draft?

Pursing his lips, leaning into his interviewer, Donald Trump exudes buffoonish power as he warns the world that he if is president of the United States oil prices will drop, labor markets will buckle to his will and America will strike fear in the hearts of anyone who dares defy him.

Trump spends a lot of time pretending that he would be the greatest commander-in-chief in American history.

Or as he would say - he would be "amazing."

What may really be amazing about the militaristic Donald Trump is that he may be a draft dodger.

Consider this from A&E Biography profile of Trump:

Donald Trump was an energetic, assertive child, and his parents sent him to the New York Military Academy at age 13, hoping the discipline of the school would channel his energy in a positive manner.

Trump did well at the academy, both socially and academically, rising to be a star athlete and student leader by the time he graduated in 1964.

He entered Fordham University and then transferred to the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania from which he graduated in 1968 with a degree in economics.

According to A&E, Trump then went to work his wealthy father and later moving to Manhattan, where in the 70s Trump was engaged in real estate deals.

In 1964, at the age of 18, Trump would have been required to register with the Selective Service at his draft board.

Did he? What was his classification? Did he receive a deferment?

In 1968, when Trump left college at the age of 22, he would have been ripe for the draft unless there was a deferment for real estate executives.

Trump has bragged about going to military school and being a star athlete but he was also a no-show at military enlistment offices.

So in the spirit of asking for birth certificates (has anyone seen Trump's), let's see Trump's draft card and deferment records.

And perhaps he can explain how he managed to avoid the draft - especially after graduating from college in 1968.

What do you say Donald?

To help Trump refresh his memory, a copy of his draft record is here.

Follow us on Twitter @crowleyreport

Art by CPR artist Pat Crowley. All rights reserved.


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Allegedly, Donald's father asked one of his tenants, a podiatrist in Queens to write a letter for a medical draft deferment due to a foot condition.

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