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Selective: DeSantis/Trump Military Service

Tracy Davenport Tracy Davenport
1st June 2021
Selective: DeSantis/Trump Military Service
DeSantis served, while Trump did not (Getty Images).

The Claim

Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump served in the military.

Emerging story

Coinciding with Memorial Day weekend, some on social media are questioning the military service of various politicians. 

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Misbar’s Analysis

Misbar has discovered the results regarding the military service of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former President Donald Trump are mixed. According to the Florida Department of State, Governor DeSantis earned a commission in the U.S. Navy as a JAG officer while attending Harvard University Law School. As an active service member, he supported operations at the terrorist detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He was also deployed to Iraq as an adviser to a U.S. Navy SEAL commander in support of the SEAL mission in Fallujah, Ramadi and the rest of Al Anbar province. According to his website, his military decorations include the Bronze Star Medal for Meritorious Service and the Iraq Campaign Medal.

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However, former President Trump did not serve in the military. According to Business Insider, Donald Trump received military draft deferments five times — once for bad feet and four times for college. Instead of serving in the military, the former president instead went to work for his father when he finished college. His former lawyer, Michael Cohen, told lawmakers during a testimony that President Trump had made up a fake injury to avoid going to Vietnam according to the Military Times. Serving in the military is not a prerequisite for becoming president but more than half of previous presidents had some military service. 

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Social media users making the claim may be confused by the title Commander-in-Chief, but the president is a civilian officer.

Misbar’s Classification


Misbar’s Sources

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