This election is a very strange one. Of all the many, many things we can talk about and analyze, this week it is going to be the candidate’s personal health. This has recently been brought into the spotlight as Trump and others on the right have issued claims doubting
Clinton’s health after a video of Clinton almost passing out was released. This video lead us to find out that Clinton was diagnosed with pneumonia a few days prior to the video being released but that she would recuperate to full health after some bed rest and antibiotics. From the release of that video on, the genie had been released from the bottle and the personal health of the candidates was made a topic of discussion in the media. It seems that what we have learned from this that Clinton’s health will be fine, but she will continue to be the same candidate we have seen throughout this election cycle and that transparency will not be a priority for either of our candidates.
According to Clinton’s doctor, the 68-year-old political candidate was diagnosed with pneumonia on 9/9/16. After this, she had several speeches and interviews during which she could not control her coughing, and then on 9/11/16 she had to leave a 9/11 memorial service early. This is where the video was taken of her needing to be carried to be able to enter her vehicle. For the first few hours the Clinton Campaign told the press she left due to heat exhaustion. Eventually, the campaign came clean and admitted that she had pneumonia. According to her doctors, and what she has clearly demonstrated throughout this election cycle, she does have the mental and physical stamina to be our commander and chief, despite Trump’s claims otherwise. Other doctors have analyzed the two pages of medical records she has released and have agreed that Clinton is a healthy 68 year old who is physically fit enough to serve and President of the United States.
What was shown however, is that Clinton did not want to share her diagnosis with us and only did so when she absolutely had no other option. To show the extent of her secrecy, Clinton choose not to even share her medical condition with her Vice Presidential Candidate Tim Kaine until after her health scare. This is not a new impulse for Clinton, it is just being reaffirmed for us.
She deliberately chose not to share the diagnosis with us when she received it on 9/9/16, she deliberately chose not to share the diagnosis with us during one of her several coughing fits, and she deliberately chose not to share the diagnosis with us even right after her near collapse. It took the video going viral to make her “choose” to share the diagnosis with us. This is the Clinton we have experienced throughout this campaign and we shouldn’t expect a new open Clinton during the general election because it would be entirely fake. Voters should know that a President Clinton would not have an emphasis on transparency and openness with her constituents, though she is healthy enough to be elected.
It seems that in this year’s U.S. presidential election, candidates are only as transparent with their medical records as they need to be. In the 2008 election, Republican nominee John McCain was 72 years old and would have been the oldest President ever elected had he won. So in the spirit of transparency, he released over 1,000 pages of his medical records whereas his opponent, who was only 47 at the time, released a one-page document explaining his health history. This made sense in 2008 since McCain needed to prove that he could keep up with a 47-year-old and that it was okay to vote for someone who was older than any other candidate who had been elected as President. In this election it is now the 70-year-old Trump who is trying to say that he is healthy enough to be the oldest president ever elected, despite the fact that he has only recently released one medical document. And his opponent is not a young 47-year-old, but a 68 year old who has had blood clots and suffered from a concussion while working as Secretary of State.
Both have miserably failed the bar created by previous candidates in health transparency.
Both Trump and Clinton should release more medical records not because I am concerned about their health, but because they should both be running a more transparent campaign as they each try to be the leader of the free world.