Surprise U.S. Senate nominee Alvin Greene frequently mentions his 13 years of military service, but records obtained Thursday by The Associated Press show that the veteran who has called himself an "American hero" was considered a lackluster service member at best.
The records, which document his superiors' decisions to pass over Green for promotion, cite mistakes as severe as improperly uploading sensitive intelligence information to a military server, and as basic as an overall inability to clearly express his thoughts and perform basic tasks.
Greene, 32, won a surprise victory in the June 8 Democratic primary. Greene handily defeated Vic Rawl, a former lawmaker and judge who had been considered an easy win by the party establishment.
Up to that point, Greene had done no visible campaigning and had no website, fundraising or staff.
In the weeks since, Greene has given a series of awkward interviews to reporters clamoring for more information on the unemployed man who lives in Manning with his ailing father. In one interview, he suggested that the state's economy could be improved by making and selling action figures depicting him in his uniform. On Sunday, Greene gave his first public speech, a 6 1/2-minute recitation of his previous comments and commitment to jobs and education. He now has a website and says he has raised less than $1,000.