WASHINGTON -- President Bush's ghost-like military career hasn't stopped his team from stink-bombing John Kerry about the medals he won in Vietnam.
But now the Humor Gazette has uncovered new allegations regarding President Bush's service in uniform, this time involving his record in the Boy Scouts of America.
Criticism about evading his duties in the Texas National Guard has died down, but the president now faces tough questions about whether he actually earned several merit badges that have been awarded to him.
Bush is an outspoken supporter of the Boy Scouts and also serves as the organization's honorary president, but there is mounting evidence that he may have completely "blown off" the respected character-building organization as a youth.
A former Texas scoutmaster says he has no recollection of Bush ever having served in his troop and could produce no records that the future president was ever issued a uniform or penknife.
Nevertheless, Bush reportedly has received merit badges for Citizenship, Emergency Preparedness and Public Speaking. Critics charge that Bush's possession of the badges is a slap in the face to thousands of diligent young scouts who have earned them fair and square.
Eagle Scout Jimmy Barton, 16, of Whittler, Texas, said he guesses the president could make a case he earned the badges through his later service to the country, but he is not convinced.
"Citizenship and Emergency Preparedness I could understand, but Public Speaking? Please," said Barton. "I think he should give them back unless he wants to do the work. I had to report 15 suspicious neighbors to the Justice Department to get my Emergency Preparedness badge."
Bush responded to the allegations on "Meet the Press," saying, "I would be careful to not denigrate the Boy Scouts."
Earlier today, the White House released dental records showing Bush had received treatment for a cavity caused by eating toasted marshmallows at a Boy Scout jamboree in 1960.