Presidential Candidates’ Health Then And Now


Hillary Clinton is not a young woman.  If elected President, Mrs. Clinton would be a few months younger than Ronald Reagan was when he was first elected.  Mrs. Clinton also suffered a fall and a concussion in 2012.  The cause of the fall has not been determined, and the extent of the concussion has been the subject of some informed speculation.
Much of this was covered by the press in 2014, but there have been no definitive answers from the Clinton camp, and as usual, the press has responded with its usual lack of curiosity where Democrats are concerned, and has been content with being stiffed by the campaign.

It has therefore fallen to the Trump campaign to raise the issue, in its usual ham-handed way.  The press has responded by, more or less, suggesting that there is something inappropriate in raising the question of a candidate’s health.

And yet, I can recall plenty of speculation about Reagan’s mental capacity in 1980.  Mark Russell even did a song about Reagan promising to quit if he became senile while in office.

Another candidate who faced a lot of discussion about his health was John McCain in 2008.  A few minutes of googling produced the following:

Indeed, the NY Times post about the attack ad evidences an acknowledgement that some people might be mildly uncomfortable with such an ad, but mostly simply reports on the ads content, and concerns about illegal coordination with the Obama campaign or the Democratic Party.

Uninformed or wild speculation about Clinton’s health is, of course, irresponsible.  But merely raising the question?

This seems to be another example of a special “Hillary Rule.”