How old is too old? Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders vie for the Oval Office – National


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On Tuesday, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders tossed his identify in for an additional U.S. presidential bid. He’s 77.

If profitable, Sanders could be 79 when elected. That’s not a lot older than certainly one of his chief opponents; Joe Biden is 76.

Is 76-year-old Joe Biden too old to run for president in 2020?

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Ronald Reagan holds the excellence of being the oldest individual to win a presidential race, having received his re-election at age 73. As compared, Donald Trump, who’s now 73, received in 2016 when he was 70.

Advisers, previous and current, in addition to potential voters, have raised issues in regards to the age of presidential hopefuls. They fear over a candidate’s power and vitality, whether or not a septuagenarian can seem contemporary and join with youthful voters.

How previous is simply too previous?

“The quick reply is we have now to watch out to not rush to judgment and on the identical time be certain that there are sufficient provisions in place ought to one thing go awry,” says Donald Abelson, director of the Brian Mulroney Institute of Authorities at St. Francis Xavier College.

“Stopping a Bernie Sanders or a Joe Biden or a Donald Trump from searching for election or re-election primarily based on an arbitrary quantity to me wouldn’t be the way in which to go.”

Eight American presidents have died whereas serving, in keeping with the White Home Historic Affiliation. 4 have been assassinated: Abraham Lincoln in 1865, James Garfield in 1881, William McKinley in 1901, and John F. Kennedy in 1963.

WATCH: Bernie Sanders proclaims 2020 presidential run

And 4 died of pure causes. William Henry Harrison died from pneumonia in 1841; Zachary Taylor died of acute gastroenteritis in 1850; Warren G. Harding died of apoplexy in 1923; and Franklin D. Roosevelt died in 1945 from a cerebral hemorrhage.

Age issues are more and more cropping up as a result of individuals are dwelling longer, says Elliot Tepper, a global relations professor at Carleton College. Look to Malaysia, he says, the place Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamed is 93 years previous “and can maintain workplace for an additional couple of years with no signal of slowing down.”

Whereas not one of the U.S. hopefuls up to now are fairly that senior, Tepper doesn’t need folks to deal with their age –– particularly contemplating Sanders at 77 is just not an outlier.

“If 70 is the brand new 50,” Tepper says, “we higher get used to it.”

WATCH: Are you too previous to drive after celebrating your 80th birthday?

Dr. Jennifer Ryan, director of scientific and educational affairs at Rotman Analysis Institute at Baycrest, in addition to senior scientist, says there isn’t actually an age while you change into “too previous to do something.”

Actually, Ryan says, growing old can deliver its personal advantages.

“There’s collective knowledge in our older adults,” she says. “They’ve clearly extra experiences to attract on and a bigger community of data to attract on than youthful adults.”

The one disadvantage is perhaps on the creativity entrance, Ryan says.

“Youthful adults could be a bit extra versatile and supply a brand new artistic perspective of their pondering as a result of there’s not an amazing sample of saved experiences.”

In the end, she says, “it’s vital to have everybody on the desk –– all ages, each race, each gender.”

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Well being dangers extra prevalent in older adults can change into a difficulty, Abelson says, however in these circumstances, there are Constitutional provisions for a vice-president to step in.

“What it actually comes right down to is a mixture of bodily power and the power to focus and discern and have the ability to perceive the complexities of the problems and to make vital choices.”

To that finish, Abelson cautions how a lot we blame on age. Have a look at Trump’s “irrational” coverage choices, he says: Can we blame age “or simply his manner?”

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“His behaviour is symptomatic of a for much longer sample of behaviour that had been well-established a long time in the past, so I believe we have now to watch out,” he says.

“If the priority is Bernie Sanders or a Joe Biden or once more, Donald Trump, don’t have youth on their facet and subsequently are incapable, I believe we’ve obtained to be very cautious about that.”

Age is a “legit concern,” Tepper says, but it surely shouldn’t be a figuring out issue.

His recommendation? “Recover from it and get on with it.”

– with recordsdata from the Related Press

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