Editor’s Note: This article was originally published with the headline “Ben Carson Just Admitted to a Serious Lie”, and later “Ben Carson Just Admitted to a Serious Fabrication”. The basis of Fortune’s story was the POLITICO story “EXCLUSIVE: Ben Carson admits fabricating West Point scholarship“. Fortune has removed portions of this story stating that Carson fabricated or lied about the West Point story. The original version of the POLITICO story said that the Carson campaign had admitted that “a central point in his inspirational personal story was fabricated: his application and acceptance into the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.”
The Carson campaign denied admitting such a thing. The Carson campaign on Friday clarified Dr. Carson’s story and said that he received an informal offer of nomination to West Point from General William Westmoreland, but he opted not to pursue it.
Politico clarified its own story with an editor’s note:
Carson’s West Point story appeared first in his best-selling 1992 biography “Gifted Hands.” In the book, Carson said he met with General William Westmoreland, a key figure in the Vietnam War, in 1969. He claimed that the meeting was followed by an offer of a “full scholarship” to West Point.
West Point told Politico, though, that it had no record of Carson being admitted. When confronted with these facts, Carson’s campaign manager Barry Bennett told POLITICO: