During Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in which Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was able to deliver sworn testimony to denounce the slanderous allegations lodged against him, all of the Democrat senators on the committee made it clear that they believed Kavanaugh’s accuser — and suspected Kavanaugh was being untruthful in his denials.
One of those Democrats who essentially called Kavanaugh a liar was Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who insinuated that if Kavanaugh had issued false testimony about any one thing in particular, his entire testimony could be viewed as just as false and untruthful.
That was jaw-droppingly rich coming from a man accused of stolen valor — lying about his military service — in the early years of his political career. Blumenthal is on record as having insinuated to voters on multiple occasions that he served the country by fighting in the Vietnam War, when in fact he was a reservist who had never deployed overseas.
President Donald Trump addressed that ironic angle during a news conference in the White House Rose Garden on Monday, during which he called out Blumenthal for his lies and issued the senator one of the president’s disparaging and personalized nicknames — “Da Nang Richard” — to highlight the falsity.
President Trump shreds Senator Blumenthal in one sound bite. pic.twitter.com/mfvUvQ2ASE
— ForAmerica (@ForAmerica) October 1, 2018
“Look at Blumenthal, he lied about Vietnam,” Trump said. “He didn’t just say ‘Hey, I went to Vietnam,’ no-no … for 15 years he said he was a war hero.”
“He fought in Da Nang Province. We call him ‘Da Nang Richard,’ Trump added. “Da Nang, that’s his nickname, Da Nang. He never went to Vietnam!”
Standing just off to the side of Trump was his son-in-law and close adviser, Jared Kushner, who seemed barely able to contain a laugh as Trump shredded Blumenthal with the new nickname.
Blumenthal and his Democratic colleagues, not to mention his comrades in the liberal media, will no doubt be infuriated by the nickname bestowed upon the Connecticut senator by the president, mostly because there is a strong element of truth to it and Trump’s nicknames for opponents have a tendency of sticking to their targets.
Even the overtly liberal fact-checkers at Snopes have had to admit that Blumenthal has lied — or at best, “misrepresented” — his military service while making “false and misleading statements” to voters on numerous occasions over the past 15 years.
It was actually The New York Times, of all media outlets, to initially call out Blumenthal for his questionable claims of service in a 2010 article while the then-attorney general of Connecticut was running against Republican Linda McMahon for the state’s Senate seat.
As it turns out, Blumenthal had requested and received five separate draft deferments during the Vietnam War — the same thing many liberals have criticized Trump for doing — and then enlisted with the U.S. Marine Corps reserve when he could no longer obtain additional deferments.
That reservist service consisted largely of drills and community service projects, all of which occurred stateside, meaning he never deployed to the combat zone of Vietnam while the war raged.
Yet on multiple occasions dating back to 2003, Blumenthal had strongly implied in speeches to voters that he had served in a combat role, via remarks such as “when we returned” in 2003, suggesting he’d suffered the same mistreatment as returning Vietnam vets during a speech in 2007, and even telling a veterans group in 2008 about lessons learned “since the days that I served in Vietnam.”
Check out Trump’s full Rose Garden statement here:
To be fair, there were other occasions over those years where Blumenthal had more clearly stated that he didn’t actually serve overseas during the war, and he has sought to excuse those instances where he implied the opposite as merely moments where he had “misspoken” and inadvertently caused confusion about his service.
But his moments of truth in prior speeches do not negate his moments of falsity, and “Da Nang Richard” has no room to call anybody else out on allegedly making false statements when his own statements have been so demonstrably untrue.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.