The Corner

The Donald and the Draft

On Tuesday, Greg Kelly, co-host of Good Day New York, queried Donald Trump about his experience during the Vietnam War. “You were 22 years old in the summer of 1968,” Kelly began. “Somehow, you avoided the draft. I want to know how you avoided it and why.”

“Well, I actually got lucky because I had a very high draft number,” Trump replied. “I was sitting at college, watching. I was going to the Wharton School of Finance. And I was watching as they did the draft numbers and I got a very, very high number and those numbers [they] never got up to.”

But in her biography of Trump, Donald Trump: Master Apprentice, journalist Gwenda Blair attributes the Donald’s escape of the draft to another factor: “Donald’s military career ended with NYMA graduation; despite his athletic prowess, in 1968 he received a medical deferment from the military draft.”

I’m just asking questions. (Hat tip: The Presidential Candidates)

UPDATE: Our commenters beat me to it, but the Selective Service System’s website says the first lottery drawing was December 1, 1969 — a year after Trump had graduated from Wharton. That drawing “determined the order of call for induction during calendar year 1970; that is, for registrants born between January 1, 1944, and December 31, 1950.” According to this chart, Trump’s number was 356 (his birthday was June 14, 1946).

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