Brian Tashman's blog

5 Times Donald Trump Smeared, Cheated And Mocked Veterans

Earlier today, Donald Trump addressed the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, telling the veterans’ group that he would install a veterans’ hotline in the White House and vowing to “pick up the phone personally” if a hotline employee doesn’t properly handle a complaint.

There is reason to believe, however, that Trump might not exactly keep his word. Here are just five instances that reveal Trump’s troubling record on veterans’ issues:

1) Fake Veterans’ Hotline

Just one month after announcing his presidential run last year, Trump claimed that his campaign had “established a hotline (855-VETS-352)” for veterans “to share their stories about the need to reform our Veterans Administration.”

But if you try calling the number today, it goes straight to voicemail and asks you to send an email to the campaign.

2) Fake Veterans’ Group Fundraiser

Back in September, Trump organized a fundraiser in San Diego for a group called Veterans for a Strong America, which in turn endorsed Trump.

It turns out, however, that Veterans for a Strong America is simply a one-man group and a total scam.

Rick Cohen of Non-Profit Quarterly writes, “Veterans for a Strong America was and is clearly yet another fake organization willing to use and abuse veterans for the personal or political ends of the man who created it.”

Rachel Maddow led the way in exposing the group, noting that the fundraiser itself was likely illegal:

3) Second Fake Veterans’ Fundraiser

Upset that Fox News host Megyn Kelly was set to moderate a GOP primary debate in Iowa in January, Trump announced that he would skip the debate and instead hold a fundraiser for veterans. After the event, Trump boasted that he had raised $6 million for veterans’ causes.

However, months after Trump’s “fundraiser,” veterans’ charities reported that they were “seeing a fraction of the promised money raised.” The campaign later admitted that the event brought in well short of the $6 million figure that Trump had boasted about on the campaign trail, and reporters discovered that Trump himself never made the $1 million contribution that he pledged to personally underwrite.

Facing public pressure about the contribution, Trump finally donated the money he had promised, despite the fact his then-campaign manager Corey Lewandowski had previously claimed that “Mr. Trump’s money is fully spent.” Trump then denied that he had ever said he had raised $6 million — a claim that was easily disproved.

Steve Benen explained:

Exactly how much did Trump raise for veterans? His campaign doesn’t know. How much of it has been allocated? His campaign doesn’t know that, either. Who were the beneficiaries of Trump’s $1 million contribution? The campaign doesn’t want to talk about it.

Only when he faced immense media pressure and scrutiny did Trump finally fulfill his pledge, months after his January fundraiser and despite the fact his campaign manager had insisted that he had already donated the money.

Of course, Trump has a long history of bragging about making charitable contributions that he never actually made.

“If Hillary Clinton and her campaign had been caught making blatantly false claims about donations to veterans’ charities, is there any doubt that it would be one of the biggest stories of the election season?” Benen asked. “How much punditry would we hear about this being proof about Clinton’s dishonesty and willingness to say anything to get elected?”

4) Smearing Troops

Much as Trump denied making the remarks that he had clearly made about his veterans’ fundraiser, the candidate has denied ever mocking GOP Sen. John McCain for being a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War.

Trump, who made the comments at an Iowa “pro-family” event last summer, did in fact mock McCain for his service: “He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured — I like people that weren’t captured, okay? I hate to tell you.”

He has similarly denied ever suggesting that U.S. troops in Iraq had stolen money meant for reconstruction projects — again, despite the fact that recordings of his remarks are publicly available.

5) Attacks On Disabled Veterans

While he fashions himself as a champion of veterans, Trump has spent years, since as far back as the 1990s, urging government officials to crack down on disabled veteran vendors on Fifth Avenue, home of the Trump Tower. In 2004, Trump called such vending “deplorable.”

“He’s done more damage to the disabled veterans in this city than any other man,” one of the veterans said of Trump.

Trump Rally Closes In Prayer Asking Him To Stand Firm Against Satan

After repeatedly claiming that pastors are forbidden by law to speak about politics, Donald Trump had a pastor in the audience of his Roanoke, Virginia, rally today close out the event in prayer. The pastor, who did not give his name, called on God to help Trump and his running mate, Mike Pence, to fight the spiritual forces of Satan and save freedom in America:

Lord, we thank you so much for what these men represent in this country. We thank you that your hand is upon them and they are called up and raised up for this time. We are asking right now that they will be able to stand firm against the viles [sic] of the enemy, against Satan; we live in a supernatural world. Look at this ball we’re on. We’re held down by gravity. Two inches closer to the sun, we’d all burn, two inches further away, we’d all freeze. So we just ask right now, God, that we’ll humble ourselves and realize that we are created and we need your help and your support to make them the vessels that they need to be to stand up for freedom, the freedom that you authored in our Constitution.

Trump then promised to appoint Supreme Court justices from his recently released list of conservative jurists, warning that “if you put the wrong people” on the court, “you’re back to Venezuela.”

Bachmann: 'Treasonous' Media Covering For 'Godless' Hillary

Last Saturday, Michele Bachmann appeared on “Understanding the Times with Jan Markell,” where she declared that Hillary Clinton “has innocent blood on her hands” because of her handling of the 2012 Benghazi attack.

“She’s a dangerous woman with bad ideas,” she said.

Bachmann also took issue with the release of another congressional report clearing Clinton of wrongdoing in the incident, blaming the media for not getting tough on the presumptive Democratic nominee: “It’s sick. The media is treasonous in this country. They are part of the treasonous process. I’m sick of the media, like I’m sure most of your audience is. They’re lying, they’re dishonest. Trump’s exactly right about that.”

The former Minnesota congresswoman said that Clinton is trying to “keep Christians at home” on Election Day, arguing that past GOP presidential candidates like Mitt Romney and John McCain only lost because they weren’t true conservatives who failed to inspire a large Christian turnout. (Bachmann’s sixth-place finish in the 2012 Iowa caucus seems to undermine her theory that only far-right candidates can win major elections).

Bachmann said that Clinton is “the most godless woman” in politics who “should’ve been doing time,” before lamenting that America is under God’s judgment.

Former KKK Leader David Duke Is Running For Senate Because Donald Trump Is Championing His Issues

Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke announced today a bid for U.S. Senate in Louisiana, and he is thanking Donald Trump for inspiring his run.

Duke thanked Trump — who initially refused to renounce Duke’s endorsement but eventually reversed his stance amid immense criticism — for bringing his views into the “GOP mainstream.”

“I’m overjoyed to see Donald Trump and most Americans embrace most of the issues that I’ve championed for years,” he said. “My slogan is, ‘America First.’”

Duke also loved Trump’s convention speech: “Couldn't have said it better!” 

Jerry Falwell Had A Dream

Last night, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. addressed the Republican National Convention, where he showered praise on Donald Trump while warning that Hillary Clinton’s appointments to the Supreme Court would represent a “fatal blow to our republic.”

He also repeated a joke from his father, televangelist Jerry Falwell: "Chelsea Clinton had interviewed him about the three greatest threats facing this nation. He replied, ‘Those three greatest threats are Osama, Obama and yo’ mama.’

“Osama is now gone, Obama has six months left in his term and the only way to make America great— and one — again is to tell Chelsea’s mama, ‘You’re fired!’” he said.

Of course, Falwell, Jr. didn’t mention it was the Obama administration that made sure “Osama is now gone.”

Far-Right Pastor: Donald Trump Will Help Us 'Retake The Culture'

Carl Gallups, an End Times pastor and Donald Trump presidential campaign surrogate, told WorldNetDaily yesterday that electing Trump president would give conservative Christians an “opportunity” to “retake the culture.”

He said that we are witnessing “a great spiritual civil war in our nation, perhaps one like never before,” but a Trump presidency could undercut the forces “trying to persecute us.”

“If we back Trump, maybe, just maybe, with the grace and mercy of God’s answers to our prayers, we can get some breathing room,” Gallups said. “We can once again have the opportunity as Christians to retake the culture. We can once again live under a government that isn’t deliberately trying to persecute us and drive us out of the public square. And if we can get that, maybe we can even make America great and safe again.”

“You will never find a candidate with whom you have perfect agreement,” Gallups counseled. “I too have issues with some of Trump’s platform. But, here is the foundational truth of the matter – which candidate is saying, ‘Let’s Make America Great Again,’ and appears to sincerely mean that, and which candidate is promising more of Obama’s policies, ramped up on political steroids? That’s the bottom line real choice we have to make, regardless of specific differences we may have.”

Gallups said even when there are differences, conservatives have a chance to influence Donald Trump or even change his mind. He believes that is simply not an option when it comes to Hillary Clinton.

However, ultimately, Gallups argues Christians are facing a real time of danger. The real issue, the pastor said, goes beyond politics. It’s about the need for Christians to get some “breathing room” in a culture that is rapidly turning against them.

“In my opinion, this particular election is right up there with the presidential elections before and during the Civil War,” said Gallups. “We are in a kind of societal civil war right now! And we are certainly in a great spiritual civil war in our nation, perhaps one like never before.

“It’s no great act of morality or conscience to opt out of this. If we back Trump, maybe, just maybe, with the grace and mercy of God’s answers to our prayers, we can get some breathing room. We can once again have the opportunity as Christians to retake the culture. We can once again live under a government that isn’t deliberately trying to persecute us and drive us out of the public square. And if we can get that, maybe we can even make America great and safe again.”

Right Wing Round-Up - 7/21/16

  • Simon Maloy @ Salon: Mike Pence’s Iraq lie: The VP candidate (wrongly) announced the discovery of WMDs.

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 7/21/16

  • James Dobson has officially endorsed Donald Trump. 
  • Roger Ailes has resigned from Fox News. 

Anti-Immigrant Extremist Joe Arpaio To Address RNC

According to the Associated Press, Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio “has snagged a coveted speaking spot on the final night of the Republican National Convention.”

Arpaio, who has campaigned alongside Donald Trump, was recently found "in civil contempt of court for violating three of his orders stemming" from a "long-running racial-profiling case" where he is accused of targeting Hispanic residents.

Just yesterday, Arpaio was stripped of some of his oversight authority and has asked the federal judge presiding over the profiling case for leniency as he will "learn as soon as Friday whether he’ll be referred to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for criminal prosecution for contempt of court. "

Racial profiling is just one of a long list of abuses committed by Arpaio and his office.

Arpaio brags about running a "concentration camp" for his detainees and has a record of withholding basic medical care from prisoners and flouting sanitary standards. His office has reportedly ignored over 400 sex-crime cases, targeted Latino residents and neighborhoods, stalked Latina women and retaliated against those who criticized Arpaio.

In one case, members of Arpaio’s department staged a hoax assassination attempt against the sheriff to enhance his popularity, framing an innocent man in the process. Arpaio hired people with records of domestic violence and child sex crimes to work in his armed "posse" guarding schools in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre.

The sheriff also tapped birther conspiracy theorists to form a "cold case posse" to investigate the truth behind President Obama's birth certificate, and unsurprisingly concluded that it was a fake.

It is no wonder, then, why Arpaio has become a Republican icon

Tom DeLay: Obama Has 'Blood On His Hands'

While reacting to the recent shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, former House GOP Leader Tom DeLay said that “the president has blood on his hands” because he hasn’t denounced the Black Lives Matter movement.

DeLay told Newsmax host Steve Malzberg earlier this week that “these cops’ blood are on his hands” because President Obama supports a movement “that calls for the death of cops.” Of course, Black Lives Matter has never called for the murder of police officers.

“There is no statistic anywhere that shows as a trend or as a worldview that cops in this country are biased or racist or go after blacks just because they’re blacks,” DeLay said. “There is nothing that shows that that is the case, and for the president of the United States to support what Black Lives Matter is doing is going to cause more deaths amongst our cops in this country.”

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