Even before the 2016 presidential primaries, then-candidate Donald Trump was speculating about Hillary Clinton’s health.
“We need a president with unbelievable strength and stamina, and Hillary does not have it,” Trump told rallygoers in Alabama on Nov. 21, 2015.
Over the next year, Trump continued to baselessly suggest that Clinton’s health was waning, including mocking her after she fell ill during a 9/11 memorial service.
“She’s supposed to fight all these different things, and she can’t make it 15 feet to her car,” Trump said at the time, before imitating Clinton stumbling during a Pennsylvania rally.
Now, four years later, Trump and his allies have engaged in similar rhetoric about the health of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, even as they have been more sensitive about Trump’s health.
“Some of the stuff is pretty disgusting,” Donald Trump Jr. said Friday when asked about speculation and attacks on Trump after his positive coronavirus diagnosis. “Some of the stuff is, you know, way below the belt. It’s not worth acknowledging that.”
Trump Jr.’s comments follow months of his mockery of two brain aneurysms that Biden suffered in 1988, saying that Biden lacks the physical fortitude to be president and suggesting, without evidence, that Biden is showing signs of Alzheimer’s.
Trump has also spent months speculating about Biden’s health, saying that there is “something going on” with his mental fortitude, calling for Biden to take a drug test and mocking Biden’s frequent mask-wearing to protect against the coronavirus.
“When needed, I wear masks,” Trump said during the first presidential debate Sept. 29. “I don’t wear masks like him. Every time you see him, he’s got a mask.”
Three days later, Trump was in the hospital.