Last week, President Biden unintentionally argued against his own presidential re-election.
The 80-year-old president conceded that Americans’ concerns about his age are “absolutely legitimate” while discussing his 2024 plans with ABC News host David Muir. Opponents will be using that particular issue to argue against his reelection.
“They know that if you’re re-elected, at the time of your inauguration, you will be 82 years old,” Muir questioned, observing that Biden’s supporters as well as detractors have brought up his age. “You would finish your tenure at the age of 86. Is your age a factor in how you decide whether to run again?”
“No. But it’s fair for individuals to bring up concerns about my age. That is completely OK,” Biden said. “Watch me is all I have to say.”
Republican contender for president Nikki Haley is one of Biden’s most vocal detractors who is bringing up concerns about his age as well as the average age of lawmakers.
The former governor of South Carolina is promoting a rule requiring legislators over 75 to submit to cognitive testing to see whether they are still cognitively competent of serving in important leadership posts in the government.
In her official speech for the campaign, Haley stated, “In the America I see, the permanent politician will finally retire. We’ll set term limits for members of Congress and require mental health screenings for elected officials over 75.”
“America is not past its prime; it’s just that its politicians are past theirs,” Haley, 51, later remarked.
10% of Congress would be affected by the proposal, which drew criticism from legislators like 81-year-old Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). The oldest member of Congress is Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who announced this month that she will not seek re-election. She is 89 years old. She is only three months older than Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who was re-elected in November.
After doing a physical examination, Biden’s personal doctor wrote in a letter this month that he is a “healthy, robust, 80-year-old.”
The doctor, however, made no comments regarding Biden’s mental capacity and did not mention that he had tested the president’s mental cognition.
The conspicuous absence was caused by the fact that every 80-year-old should have basic mental cognition testing performed as part of physical examinations, according to Dr. Thomas Wisniewski, director of cognitive neurology at NYU-Langone Medical Center, who told the New York Times.