Beware, mid-to-upper septuagenarians. Nikki Haley, the newly minted Republican presidential candidate, has concerns regarding your mental acuity!
The former U.N. ambassador and South Carolina governor formally started her campaign on Wednesday, calling for “mandatory mental competency exams for politicians over 75 years old.”
That comment was very clearly meant to satisfy Republicans who have convinced themselves that President Joseph Biden, 80, is mentally ill.
That was also a jab at 76-year-old former President Donald Trump, who is also running, as well as a sizable swath of the GOP’s most reliable base of voters.
According to a Pew Research Center assessment of the 2020 presidential election, voters aged 75 to 92 were the only ones who clearly preferred Trump over Biden, by a ratio of 58% to 42%.
As a liberal, I see why you may want to question the mental competency of anyone who voted for Trump, but from a strategic standpoint, opening your Republican campaign with a heavy dose of ageism seems unproductive.
Haley 2024 – Unwise!
Of course, “Unwise!” might be Haley’s campaign motto, considering that she has the backing of just 4% of registered Republicans, according to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll. That was before she suggested that people in their mid-seventies would be incompetent.
In her speech, Haley called for “a new generation of leadership” while reciting what sounded like an “Every Republican Talking Point From The Last 40 Years” Mad Lib.
The South Carolina governor and GOP presidential candidate declares racism over!
Haley, the first woman of color to compete for the GOP presidential nomination, said that the United States is “not a racist country.”
On the same day, she was stating this, a white man in Buffalo was sentenced to life in prison for killing ten people in a racist mass shooting, admitting during the trial, “I shot and killed people because they were Black.”
With that, an increase in anti-Semitism, and Gallup polls showing that 64% of Americans “believe racism against Black people is widespread” in the United States, I’d say the jury’s still out on the whole “racist country” thing.
Hi, I’m Nikki Haley, and I’m not old like some people
all stump-speech stuff aside, Haley made it apparent that she wants to use her age to her advantage in the primary race.
At 51, she’s 24 years away from requiring the type of mental competency test she requested, a fact I’m sure will weigh strongly on the minds of voters who think the average 75-year-old should be sent adrift on an ice floe.
You can see the political ads now: “Hi, I’m Nikki Haley. Are you ready for a new generation of leadership? Do you think politicians like Joe Biden and my former boss who I would never insult, Donald Trump, should be sent upstate to farm pancakes and catch butterflies?
Do you want a president who has the guts to look your pop-pop or mee-maw in the eyes and say, ‘You’ve reached an arbitrary age, so I no longer think your brain works right’? If so, and if you are under the age of 75, I’m asking for your vote.”