White House refuses Biden mental competency test
Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley took a jab at Biden during her speech on Wednesday. As she announced her run for the 2024 election, she called for mandatory mental acuity tests for anyone older than 75 running for office.
Given that Biden, 80, has been subject to repeat attacks about his age and mental state, many found her words clearly targeted at him. However, others have pointed out that this applies to Trump as well since he is 76 years old.
Trump will be running against Haley for the Republican candidacy next year.
While the GOP has been criticizing the president for years now, Haley’s motivation may not be directed at Biden or Trump specifically.
Haley is keen on modernizing the government, showing her dislike for generational career politicians.
“In the America I see, the permanent politician will finally retire,” she said, adding, “We’ll have term limits for Congress. And mandatory mental competency tests for politicians over 75 years old.”
Biden Passes His Physical
On Thursday, the White House released the results of Biden’s annual physical, which concluded that the president “remains a healthy, vigorous, 80-year-old male.”
Kevin O’Connor, Biden’s physician, noted that aside from high cholesterol, a reflux-induced cough, and stiff gait, all of which were pre-existing and haven’t worsened, the president is in great shape.
The physical did include a neurological exam, which checked for brain-related diseases such as stroke and Parkinson’s. However, there was no official evaluation of mental competency.
White House Backs Biden
Following Haley’s comments, the White House continues to insist that the president is more than capable of running the country.
White House press secretary Karine Jean Pierre highlighted that Biden has repeatedly proven himself, stating, “Maybe they’re forgetting the wins the president got over the past few years, but I’m happy to remind them anytime.”
Deputy press secretary Andrew Bates backed Biden up as well, critiquing Republicans for overplaying the age card.
Not All Democrats Agree
Despite the White House’s strong stance, not all Democrats believe that Biden should run for a second term.
According to a poll done by the Associated Press — NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, only 37% of Democrats would like to see Biden in the White House for another four years.
One anonymous Democratic strategist explained why, candidly saying, “I love Joe Biden. I’ve always loved Joe Biden. But I don’t think an 80-something should be the leader of the free world. It’s nothing personal. I think he’s done an amazing job as president but I do wonder about a second term.”
Meanwhile, another poll also showed that around 70% of Americans aren’t keen on Biden running again, the reason mainly being his age.
Nothing to Hide, Nothing to Lose
Although the White House continues to support Biden, no comment has been made on whether the president would agree to Haley’s proposition. This has prompted some of Haley’s supporters to suggest that if he really is fit for office, he has nothing to lose.
According to The Hill, “Political observers say the transparency will help Biden.”
There has also been no official confirmation on whether Biden will be running for a second term. However, an announcement is expected within the next few months.