31 August 2008
Obama Vice-Presidential Pick Joe Biden used five deferments to avoid military service in Vietnam. He was eventually disqualified due to asthma, even though Biden never mentioned the asthma in his memoir, which records numerous athletic exploits as a teenager and young man:
Officials with Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama’s campaign released Biden’s Selective Service records at the request of The Associated Press. Less detailed records were available from a National Archives facility in Philadelphia.
According to the documents, Biden, 65, received several deferments while he was an undergraduate at the University of Delaware and later as a law student at Syracuse University. A month after undergoing a physical exam in April 1968, Biden received a Selective Service classification of 1-Y, meaning he was available for service only in the event of national emergency.
“As a result of a physical exam on April 5, 1968, Joe Biden was classified 1-Y and disqualified from service because of asthma as a teenager,” said David Wade, a campaign spokesman.
In “Promises to Keep,” a memoir that was published last year and became an instant best-seller after he was tapped as Obama’s running mate, Biden never mentions his asthma, recounting an active childhood, work as a lifeguard and football exploits in high school. . . .