When Donald Trump was elected as President of the United States, there were many questions raised regarding his age. At then-70-years-old, the grandfather-of-five became the oldest president to ever claim the Oval Office. Would he be fit enough to handle one of the world’s most demanding jobs?
Trump’s age was particularly prominent given that his predecessor was a vision of relative youth by comparison. Upon leaving the White House in 2017, 55-year-old Barack Obama had already served eight years as the commander-in-chief, a job that had clearly taken its toll if Obama’s greying hair was anything to go by. So when Trump began to slur his speech on Wednesday in his Israel policy speech, people became concerned that the businessman, turned politician, may be suffering from poor health. As the controversial speech came to an end, the New York-born president became audibly lispy, especially when he struggled to say the concluding sentence of his speech: “God bless the United States.” Immediately the world’s media began to speculate that the television personality-turned president, was suffering with health problems. Joe Scarborough, the Morning Joe co-host, even went as far as to suggest that dementia was the most likely cause of Trump’s speech difficulties. Scarborough, whose mother has dementia, went on to voice concerns about a man with dementia being in “control of nuclear weapons.” Meanwhile, a board-certified dentist from Virginia, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Daily Mail that Trump’s odd speech may have been caused by a loose denture plate. Before Trump was even elected president, his rather eccentric personal physician, Dr. Harold Bornstein, came forward to declare that the Republican candidate would be “the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency,” helping to quash rumors that Trump wasn’t physically fit for the job. In an attempt to try and shut down the rumor mill, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders came forward to tell reporters that any questions regarding the president’s well-being were “frankly pretty ridiculous.”
“The president’s throat was dry. Nothing more than that,” she bluntly explained, before going on to say that Trump would undergo a full medical exam in the New Year, while carefully stating that the exam was nothing more than “the full physical that most presidents go through.”
“That will take place at Walter Reed [National Military Medical Center], and those records will be released by the doctor following that taking place,” she said, evidently confident that Trump would pass with flying colors. The last time details of Trump’s health were made public was in September 2016, a few days after his rival presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, collapsed at a 9/11 memorial service in New York City. This report, again compiled by Bornstein, pronounced him to be “in excellent physical health.” However, this didn’t stop Twitter users from suggesting the Trump had indulged in narcotics ahead of his Israel policy speech. “Is Trump using again? My mouth used to get dry like this when I was on drugs,” wrote one user, while another typed: “Looks stroke-ish, but could be, I dunno, dental?” The cause of his speech impediment remains unknown, for now. In the New Year the world may have the answers they desperately seek regarding Trump’s health when the official report on his physical condition is released. However, this isn’t the first time Trump has found himself the topic of debate for his behavior during a speech. Earlier this year, he went viral after simply drinking a bottle of water… He really is the GIF that keeps on giving.