by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Last week, Nikki Haley called for mental-competency tests for every politician over 75, and it’s a close call whether 75-year-old senator Mitt Romney of Utah or 75-year-old senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia had a better response to the proposal. Matt Laslo reports for Raw Story:
“I’m happy to sign up and take the test,” Romney (R-UT) told Raw Story while walking back to his personal office after voting Thursday.
As for whether Romney supports a congressional cognitive test? He laughs it off.
“I’m not interested in testing my colleagues — I know which ones are nuts already,” Romney laughed.
. . .
Haley may be thinking too small with her focus on 75+ lawmakers.
“It should be 55!” Manchin replied.
“So you’d gladly take that test?”
“Oh, happy to,” Manchin — who’s still weighing whether or not to run again in 2024 — replied. “Maybe they’d send me home!”
It remains to be seen how much the issue of Joe Biden’s age — he’d be 86 by the end of another term — will matter in 2024, but it’s clear Republicans will have a much harder time making political hay out of it if they nominate Donald Trump again. As I reported last week:
On Capitol Hill on Wednesday, Texas GOP senator Ted Cruz, the runner-up in the 2016 Republican presidential primary, leaned into Haley’s attack on Biden’s age but dodged when asked if Trump is too old to serve another term in the White House.
“Biden’s too old to serve his current term,” Cruz told National Review. “Biden, sadly, is in the midst of serious mental decline. The Joe Biden [of] today is not the same guy that so many of us knew a decade ago. And he’s not up to the job.”
Asked directly if Trump is too old to serve another term as president, Cruz didn’t directly answer one way or the other. “That’s a decision that’s going to be made by voters,” he said.