The question of Joe Biden’s mental health has long gone unanswered — but it looks like the former vice president is trying to clear things up.
According to Breitbart, the Democrat White House hopeful claimed Tuesday that his cognitive abilities have “been tested” and are “constantly tested.”
But as Breitbart noted, that assertion doesn’t square with the medical report released by his campaign in December 2019.
Biden broached the topic at the tail end of a press conference Tuesday, when Fox News reporter Doug McKelway asked the Democrats’ presumptive presidential nominee if he had ever been tested for any sort of cognitive decline.
“I’ve been tested and I’m constantly tested,” Biden replied before launching into an attack on President Donald Trump’s mental acuity. “All you’ve got to do is watch me — and I can hardly wait to compare my cognitive capability to the cognitive capability of the man I’m running against,” he said, according to Breitbart. Take a look:
👀 Biden admitted today he’s “been tested” and is “constantly tested.”
Did Biden take a cognitive test? What were the results? Why is he getting frequently tested? pic.twitter.com/A4NCC8w2wC
— Trump War Room – Text TRUMP to 88022 (@TrumpWarRoom) June 30, 2020
The missing piece?
If true, the constant cognitive tests must be a fairly recent addition to Biden’s routine. According to Breitbart, The Washington Post reported in December that the 77-year-old had been described as “healthy” and even “vigorous” in a three-page summary of his medical history — the first release of such information for Biden since 2008, when he served as then-candidate Barack Obama’s running mate — but there was one obvious omission to that report.
The December health summary contained bits of information about Biden’s prior health issues and was generally considered to be a positive report, the Post said, but there wasn’t any talk whatsoever of the former vice president’s cognitive capabilities.
“The only test that hasn’t been done is the cognitive functioning test,” University of Illinois–Chicago professor of public health Stuart Jay Olshansky told the Post at the time, according to Breitbart. “But the fact that he’s on the campaign trail and meeting a rigorous travel and meeting schedule probably would suffice as a replacement for the formal test for cognitive functioning.”
Following doctor’s orders
Though Biden maintains that his health — both mental and physical — is on the up-and-up, the former vice president has had anything but a “rigorous” campaign experience. What’s more, the ex-VP announced at his Tuesday presser that he would be foregoing campaign rallies this election season in light of concerns over COVID-19.
“I’m going to follow the doc’s orders — not just for me but for the country — and that means that I am not going to be holding rallies,” Biden said, according to the BBC. “I won’t be holding rallies.”
Only time will tell what impact that decision has on Biden’s chances of winning the White House this November.