The possibility of an octogenarian on the presidential ticket is worrying many Americans — perhaps because it’s not just the presidency that’s aging. But will voters actually start rejecting candidates because of their age?
Americans apparently agree on at least one thing: age matters. A recent CBS News poll shows that large, bipartisan majorities believe there should be maximum age limits for elected officials, with nearly half of those surveyed saying the cutoff should be 70 years old. That, of course, would eliminate the two presumptive candidates in next year’s presidential election. If Donald Trump, 77, manages to reclaim the White House in 2024, he would become the oldest person to ever win a presidential election. The same goes for Joe Biden, already the nation’s oldest-serving president at age 80.
It’s not just presidential politics that’s graying. High profile health scares for Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have brought increased attention to the fact that this U.S. Senate is the oldest in its history, with an average age of 63.4 years, and nearly a quarter of the body over age 70.
How did a country that ostensibly worships youth come to be led by one of the oldest political classes in the democratic world? And how much of a problem is it, really? Read on to explore the politics of old age from all sides, including whether voters actually punish candidates for too many candles on their birthday cakes.
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NBC News interviewed dozens of voters about whether they are concerned about Biden's advanced age — and whether it's as much of an issue for Trump.
Republicans are gleeful, and Democrats are worried about Biden’s age. But such attacks on White House contenders go back to antebellum days and rarely draw blood.
Two of the oldest members of the U.S. Senate showed the vulnerabilities that come with gerontocracy last week. But age limits can still be difficult to talk about or pass as law.
Joe Biden and members of Congress are increasingly long in the tooth – and more and more out of step with a much younger US public
Outside of the U.S., older leaders tend to be a feature of countries that are less free politically. Vladimir Putin and China's Xi are both 70, and have been in power for years.
Is it time for a constitutional amendment to oust incapacitated lawmakers?
On the dangerous reign of the octogenarians.