Ex-senator challenges Trump to get X-rays proving he had bone spurs during Vietnam draft

A former Democratic senator who lost part of his leg during the Vietnam War challenged President Trump to get X-rays of his feet to prove that he had bone spurs during the draft.

Amid a growing outcry over Trump’s recent attacks on the late Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a Vietnam prisoner of war, former Sen. Bob Kerrey (Neb.) said Wednesday during CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360” that “you don’t grow out of bone spurs.”

{mosads}“I call on the president, get your feet X-rayed. Let’s see those X-rays. I want to see,” said Kerrey, a 1992 presidential candidate who retired from the Senate in 2000. 

“While John McCain was flying combat operations in Vietnam, you were, I think, falsifying that you had bone spurs in order not to go to Vietnam,” Kerrey said. “Now, I know lots of people who avoided the draft, but this isn’t what he’s saying. He said ‘I physically couldn’t go.’ Well, Mr. President, get your feet X-rayed and let’s see those bone spurs. I don’t think he has them.”

Trump, who has criticized McCain for being captured after his plane was shot down in 1967, said recently that McCain was “not my kind of guy,” calling the Purple Heart- and Silver Star-awarded veteran “horrible” on Monday.

Kerrey said he thinks Trump’s remarks show that he thought McCain was a “fool” to have gone to Vietnam.

“We were the suckers. We were the stupid ones. We were the ones that didn’t have the resources to be able to get out of the draft,” the former senator said.

McCain himself criticized Trump’s draft deferment before his death in August from brain cancer. 

“One aspect of the [Vietnam] conflict, by the way, that I will never ever countenance is that we drafted the lowest income level of America, and the highest income level found a doctor that would say that they had a bone spur,” McCain said in 2017. “That is wrong. That is wrong. If we are going to ask every American to serve, every American should serve.”

The daughters of a New York podiatrist came forward last year and said their father may have diagnosed Trump with bone spurs to help him avoid military service.

The daughters of Larry Braunstein, the foot doctor, said they didn’t know if he ever examined Trump but that he signed off on the diagnosis as a favor to Fred Trump, from whom their father rented his Queens office.

“I know it was a favor,” said Elysa Braunstein, whose father died in 2007. The Trumps sold the building in 2004.

“What he got was access to Fred Trump,” she continued. “If there was anything wrong in the building, my dad would call and Trump would take care of it immediately. That was the small favor that he got.”