Donald Trump was criticized Tuesday for saying he “always wanted” a Purple Heart.
(Alex Wong/Getty Images)
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Updated: Tuesday, August 2, 2016, 7:11 PM
He may not have any heart for grieving military families, but Donald Trump now has a purple one without ever stepping on a battlefield.
The blowhard billionaire, in the middle of his own war of words with veterans’ loved ones, was given the Purple Heart award by a veteran in Virginia.
“I always wanted to get the Purple Heart. This was much easier,” the Republican candidate said, adding that its original recipient Lt. Col. Louis Dorfman had given it to him as an expression of confidence.
Trump said that the medal was an original, though Dorfman told NBC that it was a replica.
Military members slammed the real estate tycoon — who avoided serving in Vietnam — for trumpeting the gift while he was facing criticism over his treatment of a slain Army captain’s family.
“This is how one usually looks when you are awarded the Purple Heart. Nothing easy about it,” Illinois Rep. Tammy Duckworth posted on Twitter next to a picture of her in the hospital.
The Chicago Democrat lost both her legs while serving in Iraq.
Rep. Tammy Duckworth, who lost both her legs in Iraq, said there was “nothing easy” about receiving her combat injury medal.
(Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)
Conservative writer and Iraq War veteran David French posted,” Ten bucks says he doesn’t even know what a Purple Heart is.”
“If @realDonaldTrump wants to be the Commander in Chief, he needs to act like one. And that can’t start until he apologizes to the Khans,” Medal of Honor recipient and Sarah Palin’s son-in-law Dakota Meyer tweeted.
Meyer was referring to Trump’s reaction to Khizir and Ghazala Khan, who took the stage at the Democratic National Convention and challenged the GOP nominee’s rhetoric about Muslims.
The controversy comes as Trump faces widespread criticism for insulting the family of a fallen veteran after their DNC speech.
(J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
Trump suggested afterward that Ghazala was not allowed to speak about her deceased Army captain son Humayun, prompting calls for an apology from Gold Star families and rebukes from fellow Republicans such as Sen. John McCain.
The focus on Trump’s relationship to the armed forces has also put a spotlight on previous times he has belittled military service.
Trump, who went to a military school, avoided the draft because of bone spurs in his heels.
He has also repeatedly compared serving in Vietnam or Iraq to his own struggles avoiding STDs while dating in New York in the 1980s.