In the debate last night, Sen. Kamala Harris asserted that Joe Biden has been transparent about his health status. This comment came in an exchange with Vice President Mike Pence discussing President Trump’s COVID-19 treatment. Harris’s assertions that voters have full access to everything they would like to know about Joe Biden’s health is simply not true.
Joe Biden has refused to be transparent on the one medical question everyone paying attention to wants more information about. He is obviously having cognitive problems that go far beyond his well-known gaffes. Whenever he is asked if he is willing to take a cognitive test, he either laughs or becomes angry.
He has not had a full neurological exam or submitted to a cognitive test. According to Rasmussen, as of the end of June, at least 38% of voters think Joe Biden is in the early stages of dementia. Among Democrats and independents, 51% think he needs to answer this definitively. But he never has.
Beyond his current behavior, Joe Biden has a significant neurological history. In his 2007 book, Promises to Keep, he tells the story of suffering a brain aneurysm and the subsequent treatment he received. According to Delaware Online:
In his 2007 book Promises to Keep, he describes passing out in a hotel room in Rochester in February 1988, where earlier that night he had given a speech at the University of Rochester. He recalls a “lightning flashing inside my head, a powerful electrical surge — and then a rip of pain like I’d never felt before.” He was unconscious for five hours.
Biden flew back to Wilmington the next morning, despite feeling weak and sick. Shortly after returning to his home, he was rushed to Saint Francis Hospital in Wilmington. The results of a spinal tap showed blood in his spinal fluid, meaning an artery in his brain was likely leaking, Biden wrote.
A CT scan revealed an aneurysm lying below the base of his brain. Surgery was his best chance of survival.
He underwent a microsurgical craniotomy at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C. The chances of surviving the surgery were 50 percent, but the likelihood of waking up with serious deficits was even more concerning, Biden wrote.
He also had surgery to repair a second aneurysm that did not rupture shortly after the above episode.
Joe Biden now suffers from atrial fibrillation. This condition is an irregular and often rapid heart rate that occurs when the two upper chambers of your heart experience chaotic electrical signals. While this condition can be fleeting, Biden’s doctor calls the nominee’s atrial fibrillation “persistent,” and says Biden uses blood thinners to prevent clots. According to the Mayo Clinic:
A major concern with atrial fibrillation is the potential to develop blood clots within the upper chambers of the heart. These blood clots forming in the heart may circulate to other organs and lead to blocked blood flow (ischemia).
These clots can travel to the brain, causing transient ischemic attacks (TIA) and ischemic strokes. His doctor’s full statement in December 2019 did not address Biden’s neurological and cognitive health. It did state the last angiogram, an X-ray to visualize Biden’s cranial blood vessels, showed no new aneurysms five years ago. It does not say if he has been evaluated for or suffered any injury to his brain since then. These disclosures still leave Biden’s cognitive health in question.
In addition to obvious confusion, we have seen him engage in inappropriate behavior. He sucked on his wife’s fingers at an Iowa event, opined about children playing with his leg hair, and just told some young girls he wants to see them dance in four years. We have also seen Biden get aggressive with people at events. He has challenged people to fights, called them names, and sworn at them.
Then there are the press lids. His campaign has cut off the press and said the candidate is not available, with no explanation, by mid-morning every few days. Supposedly Biden was prepping for the first debate for three days. That would not seem to rule out an occasional media interview.
This doesn’t even take into account his increasing number of gaffes. Fumbling the Declaration of Independence, forgetting where he is, and never being able to rattle off statistics accurately is also a big concern. So, until Joe Biden submits to a detailed cognitive exam free from any medication, he is not being transparent about his health. At least not on the biggest health concern American voters actually have about him.