Army Probes Soldier at Ron Paul Rally

Jesse Thorsen may face legal trouble for endorsing Paul in uniform
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 6, 2012 4:56 AM CST

Army reservist Jesse Thorsen is a big fan of Ron Paul's foreign policy, but he's likely to face legal trouble for getting on stage at a Paul rally in uniform and saying so. Taking part in a partisan political event in uniform is a violation of Defense Department rules, and the military is investigating Thorsen, says an Army Reserve spokeswoman. Thorsen "stands alone in his opinions regarding his political affiliation and beliefs, and his statements and beliefs in no way reflect that of the Army Reserve," the spokeswoman says.

Thorsen—who said being on stage with Paul was like "meeting a rock star"—looks set to become the Paul campaign's Joe the Plumber, although his past may prove to be a problem, the Atlantic notes. The 28-year-old soldier, who served in Afghanistan in 2009, told CNN that he had been serving in the military for 10 years—but in fact he has been in and out of the military and only served a total of six years. He was arrested for burglary in Tampa in 2004 and re-enlisted in 2007 when a judge offered to end his probation early if he did so. (More US military stories.)

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