While Politico and the rest of the left-wing media attempted to slander Dr. Ben Carson over his supposed “lie” regarding a scholarship offer to West Point, they’ve been significantly less interested in whether 2016 Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton lied when she said she tried to join the Marines as a young woman.
Maureen Dowd, writing for The New York Times, originally covered the story in 1994. She wrote:
Speaking at a lunch on Capitol Hill honoring military women, Hillary Rodham Clinton said that she once visited a recruiting office in Arkansas to inquire about joining the Marines. She told the group gathered for lunch in the Dirksen Office Building, according to The Associated Press, that she became interested in the military in 1975, the year she married Bill Clinton and the year she was teaching at the University of Arkansas law school in Fayetteville. She was 27 then, she said, and the Marine recruiter was about 21. She was interested in joining either the active forces or the reserves, she recalled, but was swiftly rebuffed by the recruiter, who took a dim view of her age and her thick glasses. “You’re too old, you can’t see and you’re a woman,” Mrs. Clinton said she was told, adding that the recruiter dismissed her by suggesting she try the Army. “Maybe the dogs would take you,” she recalled the recruiter saying. “It was not a very encouraging conversation,” she said. “I decided maybe I’ll look for another way to serve my country.”
Even Dowd at the time questioned the story. The story, said Dowd, “did not seem to fit in with the First Lady’s own persona,” given her identity as a peacenik opposing the Vietnam War and her Life magazine appearance “as an anti-establishment commencement speaker at Wellesley College.” And, as Dowd noted, Hillary told friends she only moved down to Arkansas to be with Bill. Dowd asks, rightly, “she had moved to Arkansas to be with Mr. Clinton, so why was she thinking about joining the Marines?”
As Jim Geraghty of National Review noted in 2007, Hillary’s story doesn’t hold water. Recruiters in 1975, after the end of the draft, would have killed to get Hillary in the service. And no, her eyesight wouldn’t have been a barrier.
In 2008, Bill Clinton tried to tell the same story about Hillary, only he said that she tried to join the Army instead of the Marines.
When Hillary was asked about this bizarre story in 2007, here was her answer, according to Michael Crowley at The New Republic:
I wedged in my second question: What should people make of the fact that she had briefly tried to enlist in the military? At this her eyes narrowed and she threw me a glare of mistrust. “I have very deep and quite broad relationships with people in the military,” she said. As for the meaning of the recruiting visit, “I can’t tell you,” she said with a dismissive wave. “You go look at that.”
Less than edifying.
Hillary has made similar claims about official discrimination about other government agencies. Earlier this year, she claimed that she wrote a letter to NASA when she was 13 saying she wanted to be an astronaut, but received a letter back saying she couldn’t because she was a woman. That would have been illegal under federal law.
She also infamously claimed that she survived sniper fire while flying into Bosnia in 1996: “I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base.”
This was a lie.
The media have not checked Hillary’s Marine claim; they take it at face value. That’s because she’s not a black Republican.