Trump Campaign Again Using Veterans For Political Advantage
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Donald Trump this week instigated another circus match with Fox News ahead of tonight's GOP debate – taunting, teasing, and harassing Megyn Kelly, and acting like a spoiled child. It's all a calculated act of course, perhaps so he doesn't have to actually debate Ted Cruz, or perhaps because he's a misogynist, or perhaps because he thinks he'll lose Iowa and will use his absence as an excuse. Or, perhaps all of the above.
Like his new BFF Sarah Palin, Trump is now using America's veterans for political gain.
After saying he will boycott tonight's Fox News GOP debate, Trump hastily said he'd organize another event. He threw together a "fundraiser" for veterans groups, and did little to advertise or promote it.
"Rather than going directly to veterans groups, 100% of online donations on Trump's pro-veterans site will go directly to Trump's personal foundation," the conservative website reports.
"Trump’s personal non-profit foundation, the Donald J. Trump Foundation, does not have a history of donating much money to veterans or to veterans’ causes," the Federalist notes, adding that from 2009 to 2013, Trump's foundation "gave only $57,000 to veterans groups."
Sure, we can give Trump the benefit of the doubt and assume the money donated through his donaldtrumpforvets.com website will actually go to "Veterans needs," but does Donald Trump really care about vets?
Aside from proving with his wallet he does not, as the New York Post reports today, Trump has a history of denigrating and even trying to get rid of homeless and disabled veterans.
“While disabled veterans should be given every opportunity to earn a living, is it fair to do so to the detriment of the city as a whole or its tax paying citizens and businesses?,” Trump wrote back in 1991 to the New York State legislature, in an attempt to ban street vendors with special disabled veteran’s licenses from Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue.
“Do we allow Fifth Avenue, one of the world’s finest and most luxurious shopping districts, to be turned into an outdoor flea market, clogging and seriously downgrading the area?”
In a 2004 letter to Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Trump continued his assault.
“Whether they are veterans or not, they [the vendors] should not be allowed to sell on this most important and prestigious shopping street,” Trump said.
“The image of New York City will suffer… I hope you can stop this very deplorable situation before it is too late.”
Let's not forget it was just last week that Sarah Palin, one day after endorsing Trump, used her son, a one-year veteran, in the Army Reserves in 2008, and who never saw combat, to further Trump's agenda – as well as her own.
And now we have Donald Trump, using vets to distract from his absence onstage at the Fox News debate, and trying to make himself, a man who "received draft deferments through much of the Vietnam War" but once said he “always felt that I was in the military” because he attended a military prep school, which, the New York Times reports, was "where his parents had sent him to correct poor behavior."
Trump has done little to promote his fundraiser tonight. He posted just one entry on Facebook and one tweet to Twitter today promoting his fundraiser:
Veterans groups are wise to his ways.
“Let me put this in language Donald Trump understands,” Iraq War veteran and chairman of the progressive veterans group VoteVets.org Jon Soltz told MSNBC in a statement. “You’re a loser. You’re a third-rate politician, who clearly doesn’t understand issues, and is so scared of Megyn Kelly exposing it that you’re looking to use veterans to protect you from facing her questions.”
Of course, if you still have doubts, Trump's national spokesperson couldn't name a single veterans' organization that will receive the money from his fundraiser: