Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard, who serves in Hawaii’s national guard, will miss time on the campaign trail as she reports for active duty on Monday to participate in a two-week joint training exercise mission in Indonesia, Politico reported.
The three-term congresswoman told CBS News that “We’ll be doing a training exercise with the Indonesian military, focused on… counter-terrorism, humanitarian aid and disaster response.”
Gabbard said that “while some people are telling me, like, ‘Gosh, this is a terrible time to leave the campaign, can't you find a way out of it?’ You know, that's not what this is about."
She emphasized that "I love our country. I love being able to serve our country in so many ways including as a soldier."
Gabbard served two tours in the Middle East with the Hawaii Army National Guard — in Iraq from 2004-2005 and in Kuwait from 2008-2009, according to Politico. She is a member of the House Armed Services Committee and was previously in the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
The congresswoman has made her military experience a central part of her presidential campaign, stressing her qualifications to become commander-in-chief and criticizing “regime change wars” and “the gunboat diplomacy of the past.”
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