Blumenthal lies again

Dick Blumenthal, Harvard war hero

I wrote earlier about Dick Blumenthal lying about being captain of the Harvard swim team. This one seems more substantial, but in line with the first.

According to the New York Times, he never served in Viet Nam. Why is this disgusting? Because unlike the claim that he donned a tight Speedo and swam a few laps, laying claim to the bravery and self-sacrifice of soldiers who fought in battle should be beyond the pale. Read “We Were Soldiers Once, and Young” and tell me that a man who claims, falsely, to have been among those men deserves any public office, let alone Senator.

At a ceremony honoring veterans and senior citizens who sent presents to soldiers overseas, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut rose and spoke of an earlier time in his life.

“We have learned something important since the days that I served in Vietnam,” Mr. Blumenthal said to the group gathered in Norwalk in March 2008. “And you exemplify it. Whatever we think about the war, whatever we call it — Afghanistan or Iraq — we owe our military men and women unconditional support.”

There was one problem: Mr. Blumenthal, a Democrat now running for the United States Senate, never served in Vietnam. He obtained at least five military deferments from 1965 to 1970 and took repeated steps that enabled him to avoid going to war, according to records.

The deferments allowed Mr. Blumenthal to complete his studies at Harvard; pursue a graduate fellowship in England; serve as a special assistant to The Washington Post’s publisher, Katharine Graham; and ultimately take a job in the Nixon White House.

In 1970, with his last deferment in jeopardy, he landed a coveted spot in the Marine Reserve, which virtually guaranteed that he would not be sent to Vietnam. He joined a unit in Washington that conducted drills and other exercises and focused on local projects, like fixing a campground and organizing a Toys for Tots drive.

Would someone please put a spike through this monster’s heart? I’m just a little blogger, with a lawyer’s view of the fraud that the man is, but surely someone out there with real press credentials can alert the public to this man. He should be stopped.

UPDATE: Ooh ooh ooh! Look what’s been included in the story overnight: I hope because of a message I sent the reporter yesterday, but credit or not, I’m happy:

On a less serious matter, another flattering but untrue description of Mr. Blumenthal’s history has appeared in profiles about him. In two largely favorable profiles, the Slate article and a magazine article in The Hartford Courant in 2004 with which he cooperated, Mr. Blumenthal is described prominently as having served as captain of the swim team at Harvard. Records at the college show that he was never on the team.


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53 responses to “Blumenthal lies again

  1. Anonymous

    The swim captain reference originated in a Hartford Courant profile that cited no source for the information. Blumenthal’s official sites have simply said he was a member of the swim team. In this case, he didn’t lie but didn’t seek a correction/clarification then or in later articles that relied on the Courant work as gospel.
    The latest Vietnam service is much more clearly Blumenthal caught in an offensive lie told simply to pander to veterans and their patriotic supporters.

    • Anon, I’ve been on this story for twenty years – Blumenthal has always claimed to have been captain, and it’s in every bio because he supplied it, as well as telling anyone who would listen. He’s an awful person, as his trying to claim credit for serving in war attests. Just a downright liar.
      BTW, I can find no evidence that he was ever even on the swim team, which makes sense: the guy who alerted me to this lie two decades ago saw Blumenthal’s swim style and said, “no way could he have made varsity”.

  2. Chinatown

    Dick is the Captain of Orem’s Diner Corn Beef Hash. He loves the stuff. He does look like a 1935 Weissmuller though. Story could have merit. Give him a chance unlike what he did to Sue Blyysenwatchamacallit.

  3. Mike E

    Disgusting. Reminds me of Brave Sir Robin from Monty Python. Always willing to pile on after the risky fighting is done.

  4. Dem from OG

    Chris, there’s no defense for this classless, horrible lie. Someone died in Viet Nam, and we don’t know his name, but he was taking Dick Blumenthal’s place.

    While I share your disgust with this unfortunate moment, I would also just point out that the New York Times you so frequently castigate as a hopeless liberal rag just did a piece of reporting that may end the career of a popular liberal Democrat. And it did this reporting without bias or agenda, and revealed a truth that we may not have known until it was too late to change our minds about our vote. I’ll certainly be changing mine.

    • Dem, as I point out from time to time – like, once a week – what infuriates me about the Times is that they have great reporters and could still be a great newspaper – I started reading it at, maybe, 11 -years-old, and it grieves me to have been driven away from it by its present owner. We need great papers in this country, damn it!

  5. john

    I knew nothing about the swim team but this latest news concerning service, or more specifically lack of service in South-East Asia during the 1970’s confirms my gut feelings about the guy, a slimey opportunist, the worst our system has to offer,

    Semper Fi, Richard

    Keep up the good work Chris,


  6. Anonymous

    Papers are dinosaurs; don’t know that commie papers like NYT have ever not spun a slanted tale

    Prefer the checks and balances of modern blogs and varied viewpoints across the spectrum, freely available on Net

    Tech has made OldMedia’s stranglehold on popular views much weaker: a “union mentality” easier to break in era of ADD-affected “elites” (taxpayers and political donors, not voters) and illiterate, innumerate masses (voters not taxpayers)

  7. Anonymous

    But his efforts to avoid service in Viet Nam were heroic in and of themselves. And they succeeded.

    Can’t we at least give him credit for that?

    • Anon – I was an anti-war activist during high school – 1968-71. By 1976, I’d changed my mind and applied to join the Marines. I never did enlist, but my God, it never occurred to me to claim to be a combat veteran. Lots of us opposed that useless war, but to oppose it and then claim to have been among the guys who fought it? Unthinkable.

  8. The Word

    Hey Dem from OG – The Times deserves no credit for this blockbuster, as the story was packaged and presented to that rag by Linda McMahon. The Times therefore had the options of a) running it and letting the chips fall where they may (note the choice to run it this week, when there is still enough time for Dems to replace Lyin’ Dick), or b) passing on it, watching it run in the Wall Street Journal, and then been effectively neutered from ever criticizing McMahon again (imagine her ads “I offered the Lyin’ Dick story to the NYT and they passed. Why would that be, do ya think?”). A wicked shrewd move by McMahon.

  9. Anonymous

    “…driven away by its present owner.”

    So you hate little Pinch, but you were a fan of Punch?

  10. Dem from OG

    Got it, Word — so the Times is a liberal rag for running a story fed to it by Republican campaign operatives.

    Some of you seriously live in a Dali painting.

  11. JoeRiverside

    Thank you Lin McMahon…….Now lets go out and support Rob Simmons, a real war hero!

  12. Chris: I put up a post on Dickie’s dickering tonight as well. Looks like its going viral now. Perhaps he can wind down his legal career working for our common friend Phil. Has he ever seen a courtroom though?

  13. Anonymous

    quote:Well no, but I attended perp school with Pinch, and he really was an asshole. His father at least employed some honest columnists.

    Perp school? Do tell! 🙂

  14. Wally

    Although you, CF, and others have been questioning his honesty (and therefore integrity) for years, this bombshell is truly shocking. Put a fork in this guy; he is done.

    Now the interesting thing to watch will be how this will all unravel. He might have survived this in a different political climate. However, this will never fly in this highly-charged, anti-democrat environment. Does he fall out quickly, or will we need to see his poll numbers erode and then maybe it’s too late for the Dems to field a replacement.

    Unbelieveable. I wonder if this has had anything to do with his years of sitting out running for higher office other than atty gen.? And to think the NYTs put the knife in the guy.

  15. Stump

    To twist John Kerry’s words about Vietnam around a little, is Blumenthal going to be the last man to lie for a mistake?

  16. Teri Buhl

    Chris you deserve a blogger award for outing Blumenthal’s lie about his Harvard Swim Captain record. I also wrote this Times reporter last night and reminded him if he wanted more color for his story he should read your coverage on Blumenthal. It’s a miracle the NY Times even went after a Dem but I’m cheering them now for highlighting his fraud.

  17. Fly Girl

    All this info coming out about Blumenthal begs the question – where were these reports when he was running for AG? Did no one care then?

    • I guess, Fly Girl, that his run for national office has finally brought him into the spotlight. I’ve always bashed him because of his Johnny-come-lately approach to his major litigation cases: he waited for other states’ AGs to do the heavy lifting against MicroSoft, tobacco, whatever, then jumped in with a me-too suit and hit the media with a story of what a brave man he was. Total bullshit, but the local media played along.

      But that’s who he is – the swim captain story, the Viet Nam vet, the brave courageous Attorney General – in truth and in fact, the man is a shallow fraud. I don’t care about his political leanings – he’s just not a man of principle, and that should disqualify him from public office.

  18. Red

    No question that he’s ambitious and I don’t like liars. But where does that leave Connecticut voters?

    Linda McMahon as a US Senator? Do you think anyone in her sleazy, steroid-addled family has clean hands, or a clean bank account? WWE? Seriously? Nothing more than thugs and cheap con men.

    If I had to wager, one of our 2 candidates has been a party to real crimes in the past, while the other is just….obnoxious.

    Maybe I’ll sit this election out.

  19. Burning Madolf

    It truly amazes me that in this day and age politicians and candidates will either lie or allow a lie to fester when they should know fact checking has become so easy.

    Remember Linda McMahon said she had a degree in Education when she was appointed to the State Board of Ed? It took about 15 minutes to discover that was a lie.

    My favorite “letting the lie fester” is John Kerry in MA. allowing everyone to believe for years that he was of Irish descent.

    Dick is just another perma-candidate allowing himself to be represented as something he isn’t for political gain.

    It’s sad really.

  20. Truth Squad

    This Marine photo starting to get tarnished.

    Why doesn’t he have a picture of him standing next to rich father in law Mr Malkin at Empire State building?

    Why does he not use the picture of him standing next to look a like Spitzer?

    Why does he not show himself getting out of his nightly ride by a State trooper who tows him at taxpayer dollars from Elm St to Clapboard Ridge and back daily and to all his events?

  21. SlappedAss

    As is the case many times with politics we are forced to make a choice between the better of two evils. McMahon is not qualified and is obviously fueled by not steroids, but some insane power trip based on her husbands success. But, all things being equal, I would choose the sleazy, power hungry Republican incompetent over Big Dick Blumenthal, a career democrat, opportunistic lair, because a vote for this horses ass is a vote to keep the congress democratic and it helps the agenda of the president-not something I am interested in supporting. A vote for McMahon as horrible as she is, is a vote against what is happening in Washington at the moment. Put a Republican sign around the neck of Chico the Chimp, and he’s got my vote at this point.

  22. Fly Girl

    I don’t know the McMahon’s personally nor am I even a CT resident to vote there but I do have a good friend who has worked at the WWE HQ for years. Says the company is run superbly, no funny business, all on the up and up – family of hard workers, Linda especially, devoted to business and employees, great Board of Directors, which I believe includes CT former Governor Weichert. Hardly thugs and cheap con men.

    I’m off to vote my NY town school budget – talk about obnoxious.

  23. shoeless

    What about Peter Schiff?

    • Is he running for Senator? If so, he’s got my vote, but if I don’t know what office he’s running for, it’s likely that the rest of my fellow morons are just as unaware, which doesn’t speak well of his chances.

  24. Withdraw from Office/Senate Race

    That is the consensus from 320 NYT readers so far 1 hr only after story ran.

  25. Teri Buhl

    I think Peter Schiff is someone we all need to pay more attention too – unfortunately I just don’t know if he can swing the non-wall street vote.

  26. privileged kids

    his kids are in harvard , just like the parents cindy and dick, and grand dad peter. is that fair…scrutinize those applications.

    think one of his kids is in yale for diversity sake ..or maybe they caught his application embellishments and rejected him at harvard.

  27. shoeless

    He is, indeed, running.

    Shoot me an email if you want more info.

  28. Cos Cobber

    I like Schiff. I just dont know if Peter is williing and able to talk about things unrelated to finance. He’s a one issue candidate at the moment and that needs to change.

    Anything is better than Blumenthal…including McMahon.

  29. Dick Gump

    Like Forest, Dick Gump is just too good to be true. A little mentally challenged and flawed but lovable. Who else would attend a Scout Troop Eagle ceremony on a Sat morning. However, he did once tell me his favorite movie was Platoon because he could really relate to the characters. What a goof ball. He is really short in person. Man those negative comments in the NYT are up to 975 now in just one hour. He made it onto NBC today show this morning. Will Brian Williams pick up the story tonight?

  30. Foley

    Will Foley now switch back to the senate race since blumenthal is down?

  31. Anonymous

    To Chris and Privileged Kids:
    Bringing his children into this, is NOT appropriate nor fair game.

  32. Chris: I’m bluntly stunned that you didn’t know that Peter Schiff is running for Senate. You need to expand your reading horizons man. Below is your opportunity to put yer money where be your mouth:

    Don’t worry, I’ll still keep plugging this provincial little blog by keeping it in my roll of worthies.


  33. From attorney to Solicitor General

    I think Obama will nominate Dick to be his personal attorney in the White House. Not a bad option given the circumstances.

  34. happy in riverside

    What exactly has Linda McMahon done wrong? Yes, some of her employees are steroid-addled freaks. That doesn’t make her one, nor does it mean that she condoned their drug use. Professional athletes use steroids – period. Some might be better at getting away with it, but a lot of football, baseball, basketball, etc players are juicing. If you are going to call foul on Linda, let’s do the same for the Mara family and all of the other professional ball teams out there too.

    I’ve met Linda a few times, she’s smart, hardworking and no-nonsense. She and her husband have run a payroll, fought back from bankruptcy and have contributed to this community. Definitely voting for her – this country has had enough of career politicians.

  35. belnick

    Seems the NYT has changed its tune and published a much less condemning follow-up article:

  36. Time for a book

    Perfect time for him to explain himself in a tell all biography to set the record straight.

  37. Mindy Myers

    Mindy Myers, a former NPR person in RI will try to save Dick’s ass. You bet there will be veterans at every stump speech from now to Nov 2 standing up for this DIck.

  38. Sink or Swim News

    No matter how you slice it, “disgrace” will be Blumenthal’s middle name.

  39. Fly Girl

    Fox News sitting and waiting for news conference from Blumenthal. (1:58pm).

  40. Fly Girl

    Fox even talking about Blumenthal as Harvard Swim Team “captain”. Hey, they should credit YOU for that breaking story.

  41. Red

    WWE may have an efficient office operation. That does not make it an admirable or ethical business operation. It is an empire based on fake wrestling. Many of its paid “actors” — they are not athletes — bloat their bodies with steroids to get top billing. Violence and sexuality is presented as mainstream family entertainment. Does WWE make money?Probably. So do casinos, bordellos, and Don King. (For the record, I wouldn’t vote for him either.)

  42. Hu Nhu?

    Peter Schiff can speak about more than finance, as is demonstrated here:

  43. Fly Girl

    Red, I venture to guess ‘ethical and admirable’ business operations are few and far between. Tobacco companies? Nope. Healthcare providers? Nope. Wall Street? Nope. Hollywood? Definitely nope. Talk about making money from violence or an empire based on fakery. If you look at WWE’s website, they say :” WWE is committed to family-friendly, PG content across all of its platform”. Do I like wrestling? No, come out of the dark ages of thinking that all wrestling is violence and sexuality. Again, I don’t know the McMahons, don’t live in CT even, don’t watch wrestling, but…………

  44. Cobra

    Red–you frown on operations that are not “ethical and admirable?” Then you must also frown on the present state of the Senate, House, and Obummer’s administration.