WASHINGTON (AP) — When President Donald Trump declared Democratic presidential contender Michael Bloomberg to be a “5’4” mass of dead energy,” those were fighting words.
Bloomberg is not that short.
So say his doctor, people who have stood next to him and varying press accounts of his height from his years as New York City mayor.
Trump’s hits on “Mini Mike” prompted Bloomberg to suggest that the president has a mini-mind. Leaving that aside, Trump’s attack on Bloomberg’s stature played into years of speculation about just how tall he is.
In a letter released by Bloomberg’s campaign in December, Bloomberg’s doctor said the candidate is 5-foot-7-inches (and 165 pounds).
In 2006, a jokey Bloomberg told New York magazine: “What chance does a 5-foot-7 billionaire Jew who’s divorced really have of becoming president?”
Yet during that time, he listed himself as 5-foot-10 on his driver’s license, which he isn’t.
During Bloomberg’s mayoralty, 2002-13, the New York newspapers variously reported his height at 5-foot-6, 5-foot-7 and just shy of a 5-foot-8 aide, according to The New York Times in 2006.
Trump shortchanged all that in his tweet, cutting Bloomberg’s height by several inches.
Trump’s insult got a rise out of Bloomberg, who tweeted as if to Trump: “Behind your back they laugh at you & call you a carnival barking clown. They know you inherited a fortune & squandered it with stupid deals and incompetence.”
On Wednesday Bloomberg told a Greensboro, North Carolina, rally, “He calls me Little Mike and the answer is, ‘Donald, where I come from we measure your height from your neck up.’”
Trump’s own height has been a moving target. He’s been listed at 6-foot-3-inches by the White House physician. But in 2016, Politico reported that his driver’s license had him as 6-foot-2, the same height as on his Selective Service registration card in 1964.
Associated Press writer Jill Colvin contributed to this report.
EDITOR’S NOTE — A look at the veracity of claims by political figures.
Find AP Fact Checks at http://apne.ws/2kbx8bd
Follow @APFactCheck on Twitter: https://twitter.com/APFactCheck