(RightWingAmericans.com) – After unexpectedly rising in the polls and becoming the main contender to socialist Bernie Sanders, Democratic presidential nominee candidate Pete Buttigieg has begun leaning more on his military service to win over potential voters.
After leaving the Iowa campaign behind and moving on to New Hampshire, the former Indiana Mayor has started highlighting his military service in Afghanistan in 2014.
Buttigieg’s first TV ad in Iowa made specific reference to his tour in Afghanistan, showing the candidate holding a rifle and explicitly referring to himself as a veteran. However, military veterans are taking Buttigieg to task for misrepresenting, or exaggerating, his military service.
It turns out that not only did Buttigieg not see any action during his time in Afghanistan, he didn’t actually complete any training.
Buttigieg found himself in the United States military through a shortcut that isn’t often used. Usually, a person would need to go through four years of training, but Buttigieg skipped all that and simply filled in some paperwork, had a medical check, and was sent out to Afghanistan as an officer.
This method of joining forces, known as the Direct Commission route, has long been controversial. Combat veterans take issue with it and often label those who use it as “Pomeranian princes.” It’s hard not to understand why when you consider the fact that Buttigieg was simply sent to work in an office, away from much of the danger, working eight hours a day as soldiers went out to fight.
However important the role may have been, combat veterans take issue when Buttigieg claims to be a veteran on television.
In a debate in November 2019, Buttigieg explained, “I have the experience of being commanded into a war zone by an American president.”
During his time serving, Buttigieg even claims to have had more time for reflection than he’d had at home, and would often take his “laptop and a cigar up to the roof at midnight to pick up a Wi-Fi signal and patch via Skype into a staff meeting at home.”
Despite this, the strategy of presenting himself as a combat veteran is reportedly working. In early voting states, voters have told CNN that his military service is a “key factor in their decision making process.”
Peggy Casper, a 75-year-old voter in Winterset, Iowa, told CNN, “He knows what war is like and I don’t. think he will get us into one…I just think he seems cool. Like he would take everything into consideration and not fly off the handle and do something rash. We need someone like that.”
But would voters react the same if they knew the real nature of his service?