Bill Clark/Getty J.R. Majewski
Ohio Republican Congressional candidate J.R. Majewski has made his Air Force service — and a purported deployment to Afghanistan in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks — a big part of his story. But according to a new report by the Associated Press, the 42-year-old's biography doesn't paint a full picture.
AP reports that military documents obtained via a public records request indicate that Majewski — who has described himself on Twitter as a "combat veteran" — never deployed to Afghanistan but instead spent six months at an air base in in U.S.-allied Qatar, where it does not appear that he served in combat.
Majewski's website is scant on details related to his military service, stating only that he served in the United States Air Force from 1999-2003, during which he "served overseas, and was deployed to the Middle East in support of Operation Enduring Freedom."
But in appearances, the Republican — a staunch Trump loyalist who has admitted to being at the U.S. Capitol during the riots on Jan. 6, 2021 — has offered further details, saying in a podcast that he served one tour of duty in Afghanistan, the AP reports.
On Twitter, he has also suggested he served in Afghanistan, writing last August, "I'd gladly suit up and go back to Afghanistan tonight and give my best to save those Americans who were abandoned" in a tweet aimed at President Joe Biden.
I’m a veteran of OEF.
I’d gladly suit up and go back to Afghanistan tonight and give my best to save those Americans who were abandoned.
Why isn’t our “President” all-in?
— JR Majewski (@JRMajewski) August 25, 2021
The outlet further notes that a biography provided by the House Republican campaign committee describes Majewski as a veteran whose "squadron was one of the first on the ground in Afghanistan after 9/11," and that a recent campaign ad posted online by his supporters show the words "Afghanistan War Veteran" alongside a picture of him in military dress.
According to the documents obtained by the AP, Majewski was based at Japan's Kadena Air Base for much of his service, and was deployed to Qatar for six months in May 2002, during which time he served as a "passenger operations specialist" loading and unloading aircrafts.
AP reports that, according to records, Majewski would travel to other air bases to transfer supplies and passengers, but it is unclear if or when he ever traveled to Afghanistan or whether he was on the ground during any combat missions.
The outlet also reports that when Majewski's campaign was reached for comment, it offered "a lengthy statement" that "did not directly address questions about his claim of deploying to Afghanistan."
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Majewski — who is running to unseat long-term House Democrat Marcy Kaptur — has never served in office. He has, however, performed in recent years as a novelty hip-hop artist who raps pro-Trump lyrics. He also gained notoriety in 2020, after painting a 19,000-square-foot mural of Trump on his lawn.
Trump himself offered a "complete and total" endorsement of Majewski in June.
According to left-leaning watchdog group Media Matters, Majewski has also participated in QAnon livestreams, and has publicly embraced many of the fringe conspiracy group's false theories, at one point even proposing that Republican states secede from the United States, The Guardian reports.