A little clip from Salon.com
Is it fair to question a presidential candidate’s mental fitness?
May 24, 2020 2:00PM (UTC)
Still, bizarre behavior in a public setting can feel alarming to those who are paying attention. And indeed, as the likely Democratic nominee, Joe Biden’s public behavior is broadcast widely and is, even to a layperson, frequently bizarre. He has confused his wife for his sister, failed to remember the most iconic words of the Declaration of Independence, told a baffling and somewhat creepy story about little kids touching his hairy legsand claimed at one point that he was running for the Senate and urged people who dislike him to "vote for the other Biden."Listening to his post-caucus speech after being defeated in Nevada — an address that came before his comeback in the South Carolina primary — it is shockingly difficult to comprehend what, exactly, he is trying to say.
Some of these gaffes can be explained away by Biden’s history struggling with stuttering, something he has been open about. Yet there are aspects of his medical history that hint that his gaffes could go beyond a mere stuttering problem. Biden had two brain aneurysms in 1988 — the same year he ran his first presidential campaign — which establishes a medical history for him of brain-related trauma. (I reached out to Biden campaign officials for comment; none responded.)
Biden’s tics go beyond the inarticulatenessof President George W. Bush or even the mild gaffes to which Biden himself was famously prone during his vice presidency. There is a lack of lucidity, a difficulty in comprehending what the man is trying to say or whether even he knows exactly what he is trying to say. There is an important difference between candidates who say things that are stupid, wrong or ridiculous and someone who seemingly struggles to put together coherent thoughts; one indicates an unhealthy mind, the other a mind that may be outright wilting away. It is difficult to listen to Biden speak without fearing that he falls into the latter category.
Among experts with whom I spoke — including those who know Biden personally and mental health professionals — some agreed that Biden should proactively take steps to put public fears over his mental fitness to rest. Others expressed unease or more at raising the question.