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Does Biden Need Cognitive Testing?

Does Biden Need Cognitive Testing?

Whenever I have my annual physical – or a wellness visit from a nurse practitioner – I get a quickie cognitive test.  They give me three words to remember, and then have me draw a clock face and fill in the time they designate.  After further examination, they ask me to repeat the three words.

That is no big deal unless you fail. (For the record, I never have).  If you do fail, that can lead to a recommendation for a more serious cognitive test.  This is a matter of common procedure for folks over 70 – at least if you have a competent doctor.   

In making her campaign announcement, former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley said that all  politicians older than 75 should have mandatory standard cognitive tests.  I think that is a bit of a stretch.  However, a case can be made for the President.   After all, any diminishment of mental faculty by a President can have extremely dire impacts.  

We know that from President Roosevelt’s performance at Yalta when he was mentally incapacitated and near death – figuratively a dead man walking.  He was literally dead less than two months after that    disastrous conference.

President Biden has had his annual physical, and the docs report that he is in good health – no signs of a stroke, Parkinson’s Disease.   But what about his cognitive health.  On that, the doctors were more vague.  Yes, they said his mental functions were ok – and that he is sufficiently fit to carry out the duties as President.  But … there was no indication that he was given a standard cognitive test.  We know from past medical reports that he did not have the test previously.

I am not going to play doctor.  I am going to raise the question as to why Biden is not getting the standard cognitive tests that virtually every other senior gets.  The fact that he avoids them creates questions.

There is no doubt that Biden has shown signs of aging — physically and mentally.  He occasionally loses his train-of-thought, forgets stuff or has that senior bewildered look – those so-called “senior moments.”.    What we see from a distance may only be early signs of decline – but not necessarily alarming.  Perhaps the most significant result of any cognitive decline is Biden’s avoidance of press conferences and unscripted public  appearances.  But he should assure the American public that he is not only in good condition today, but that the prospects are good for the next five years, if he wants to be in the Oval Office for a second term.

I am not drawing any conclusion, but It is curious that he will not get the standard mental acuity testing that most older folks get routinely.  

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. andy

    The downside to Biden failing a cognitive test is we get Harris. If you think Biden is bad wait till you see what Harris does!

    • Tom

      I disagree! If everybody were a little more like Harris and did not let immigration, economy, inflation, gas and food prices, baby formula, national security bother them, we would be a lot happier and giggly like Harris. And, lets face it, she sings a great rendition of “The Wheels on the Bus Go Round….”

      • DJParker

        I prefer her rendition of “Ten Toes Up, Ten Toes Down, Two Hairy…..”. It is much more befitting of her!

    • 9mm

      Amen to that she is nothing more than a socialist racist pig

  2. Benjamin Carey MD

    I am a psychiatrist and I have watched President Biden make many gaffes. At times he appears bewildered and confused. President Donald Trump was administered the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) and according to the White House physician, RADM Ronnie Jackson MC USN, President Trump obtained a perfect score of 30. This is a very useful screening test and if the score is less than 27, further testing might be indicated. Certainly, I think that President Biden should undergo this cognitive testing.
    BAC MD

    • Concerned Citizen

      If you think Trump got anything out of the teens or single digits you need to change jobs

  3. Frank stetson

    Under current law, nothing happens if Biden fails the test. He could resign but doubtful.

    Republicans can try to impeach, but we get to call all the impaired Congresspersons….and sure, we’re gonna vote out a guy we like right now.

    You need new law; it would be a good one imo and should be based on age including all government workers. It’s a three question affair, not much cost.

    Pass it along with one mandating use of Federal Resume so we can fire the liars before they get there.

    Put both together and call it: The Santos Clause.

    • Tom

      We already have that law, it just needs to be modified to include cognitive tests for older Americans who wish to continue serving in critical roles of government. The law to amend is The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). It was passed by the Dems in 1978. 🙂

  4. Tom

    First of all, Larry, just to add some clarity to this whole subject, what you got is called a “mini-cog” test. See “” . A mini-cog can be given by anyone, you do not need medical skills or practice to give a mini-cog to someone. It is very likely that Biden has had this. This is not what people, and Nikki Haley, are pushing for with Biden. The test they are pushing for is a full blown cognitive exam that is a three phase cognitive evaluation used to determine the existence and level of cognitive impairment, see “”.

    As I said, more than likely he has already had the mini-cog test. The real problem is the vagueness of the reported results. We the People have the right to know exactly what that mini-cog showed. The doctor needs to come clean on this. Additionally, Biden should be given a cognitive evaluation before being able to run for office again in 2024. I do not say this lightly though. I am not in favor of some form of global law that says people over a certain age cannot work unless they have a cognitive evaluation. However, I am much more in favor of a mandatory retirement age for all congress, SCOTUS, and executive branch elected and selected officials that is fully compliant with The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). I thought we had a mandatory retirement age, I thought it was 72 – and for some reason I thought this came about during the Reagan Administration. I am much in favor of all politicians at state and federal level being subject to a mandatory retirement age. Perhaps we could codify it in law that if the politician refuses to retire at 72, then they must take a cognitive evaluation every even year of their age with their first test taken at age 72. I do think we the people have the right to feel confident of our politicians that deal with foreign friends and adversaries, economics, national security, etc.

    Glad to hear you passed your mini-cog. But you still seem to have problems remembering to state your sources when you give statistics and make global assertions.

    • larry Horist

      Tom … I do not know if Biden was given the mine-cog test in this last examination because nothing was reported to the public. Since a person his age could blow that one, I suspect it is not being given. That happens if he cannot remember three little words — and I am not referring to the song title. Slight memory loses do not make a person dysfunctional, but may just be an early warning. The issue or mandatory testing is dicey. Generally a bad idea … but what about brain surgeons, air traffic controllers … etc. where decreases in cognizance can have serious outcomes. What about mandatory driver testing over a certain age. My current license is good until I am 88 years old with no further requirement for testing or evaluation. I know several folks in the 90s who are driving. Most are okay, but one I would not ride with. lol One of the reason that it is especially important to test older presidents is that they have the bubble and a cadre of advisors who can conceal serious problems — Wilson, FDR and even Kennedy. We already know that Biden avoids unscripted appearances and open press conferences as much as he can — and much more than his predecessors. And more than he did in his younger days. Why is that?

    • larry Horist

      Tom … I have told you, that I do not have the time to play point-counterpoint with you and Frank. I will make an occasional short response, but no long rebuttals — and as far as sources, I am not going to take the time to dig up the research every time you and Frank demand. You can do your own research — and if you do not like my opinion — or think it is not well grounded — then make what you will of it. I do not write anything that I do not believe to be true based on my own research, experience and logic. When I speculate — as do you and Frank — I base it one what I know and what I believe — and even then, I try to minimize speculation Frank is totally unworthy of debated because he just makes stuff up..

      • Frank stetson

        What a loon.

        A world renowned debater, sure can’t see evidence here.

        He constantly lies by calling me a frequent liar. It’s utter bullshit. I may miss a fact, but extremely rare to catch me in a purposeful lie.

        It’s his only defense.

        He can’t toe the line. He can’t defend his comments. Why even allow posts? He admits it but blames time and being busy. Busy posting retreads and finishing his book, still.

        Carry on Larry. You’re funny. Of course you have no support. How could you.

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson … This post is more lies. Unsubstantiated accusations that you must know have no basis in truth. You repeatedly say I hate Democrats. A lie. I have responded many times that I simply do not hate anyone. Not in my nature. But you persist with your lie. You lie when attribute statements to me that you know I did not make. When you say I cannot defend my comments, You lie. There is a difference between can’t and have no reason to do so to your whiney demands. You say I admit that I cannot defend my comments. Another lie. In fact, much of the imaginary Larry Horist of your invention is based on lies. In fact, you may be the biggest liar on PBP. You have said so many things that are maliciously wrong. If you were a politician, the Washington Post would have to award you a permanent Pinocchio. Time to cut you adrift … again. And do not make a mistake. I do not hate you. Just no reason to respect your knowledge and integrity in these exchanges. And consider yourself lucky that the owner of the site and I are First Amendment advocates … so you will be allowed to babble as you please. Of course, you think my posts should not be allowed. That says a lot.

  5. Joe

    No. what u have here. is two totally incompetent people, that are unfit for either office.Hidenbiden wasn’t mentally fit,to even run, but Clybur,n the corrupt,got him in,or his goose was cooked. Harris is a totally incompetent,ignorant,embarrassme US history have we had such a embarrassing,failure,of a president and administration,that have been the laughing stock of america and the world.We need to replace them all and start over to erase all the corrupt deep state and rotten politicians that are against America.Seeling us out to china.

  6. Leonard Collings

    Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) For all politicians over the age of 65. If Joe Biden were a piolet would you fly on his aircraft?