REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) — President Joe Biden joked that it’s hard to admit he’s about to turn 80, but said he’s physically and mentally capable of serving a potential second term in the White House.
Biden, who turns 80 on Nov. 20, said it’s “perfectly legitimate” for voters to question whether someone his age can handle the demanding stresses of the US presidency. Biden made the comment in response to a question about his age during an MSNBC interview that aired Sunday.
He said people should judge for themselves whether he is up to the task, as polls show voters would rather not see a rematch with Donald Trump, the Republican who was impeached by Biden in 2020.
Biden would turn 82 on inauguration day in January 2025; Trump would be 78,.
A recent Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll shows that only about 3 in 10 people polled want Biden or Trump to become president in two years. Only 5 out of 10 Democrats want Biden to run for a second term, while 6 out of 10 Republicans hope Trump will run for president again.
“I think the best way to make a judgment is to look at me. Am I slowing down? Am I going at the same pace?” Biden said in the interview taped Friday while visiting the Delaware State University campus to promote his executive order of student loan waiver.
Biden has not yet officially announced whether he will run for a second term, but has repeatedly said his intention is to be re-elected.
During his 2020 campaign, Biden often presented himself as a “transition candidate” who would bridge the gap to new Democratic talent.
The age and health of both Biden and Trump loomed over a race decided by a younger and more diverse electorate and at a time when the nation faces no shortage of important issues.
In the MSNBC interview, Biden said voters should look to his “passion” for the job as they consider his age when deciding whether to vote for him.
Biden joked that he is still coming to terms with becoming an octogenarian.
“I can’t even say how old I will be. I can’t even get it out of my mouth,” Biden said.
Biden underwent a series of blood, physical, gastrointestinal, dental, visual and neurological exams shortly before his birthday last year.
dr. Kevin O’Connor, Biden’s primary care physician, wrote in a six-page memo that after that exam was released by the White House that Biden was “healthy, vigorous” and “fit to carry out the duties of the presidency successfully.” .
O’Connor said he was investigating Biden for increased cases of “throat clearing” during public comments and a stiffening of his gait.
O’Connor reported that Biden’s cough was the result of gastrointestinal reflux and that the stiffened gait was the result of a new diagnosis of “mild peripheral neuropathy,” spinal arthritis and compensation for a broken foot he sustained shortly before. he took office.
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