5 Times Presidents Got Sick And The Press Didn’t Freak Out

Newsflash, everyone – and this may come as a bit of a surprise – . . . presidents (and presidential candidates) are *gasp* human beings. I know, I know. How can this possibly be? Especially with people like Trump running for president. Is he REALLY human?

Now prepare yourself because this next statement may completely blow your mind. Seriously, brace yourself. . .

Human beings can get sick. 

We knew this long before Louis Pasteur’s microbial discoveries. Yet, there has been a completely disingenuous shock upon learning that Hillary Clinton isn’t walking the planet earth immune to illness. With the way the press is covering news of Hillary being diagnosed with pneumonia one would think that she was assumed to be some cyborg who couldn’t possibly ever find herself under the weather with an acute illness.

Fellow If You Only News writer, Justin Rosario said in his recent piece:

“I don’t know about you, but I’m rapidly losing what little faith I had left in America’s media giants to behave in a responsible manner.”

The coverage, speculation and downright sensationalized stories about the condition and consequence of Hillary’s unfortunate and ill-timed temporary illness is ludicrous.

So, with that said, let’s explore some of the recent, and not so recent, presidential illnesses that received far less scrutiny than Hillary Clinton’s temporary pause.

1. George W. Bush

The most recent has to be George W. Bush. In 2002, G.W. choked on a pretzel and fainted. The reporters at the Los Angeles Times wrote a 784 word article about it. Not due to any concern about his health, but to make sure the public didn’t have any concerns either. While a few jokes were made about the incident, there wasn’t talk of removing the sitting president from office. There wasn’t mass hysteria based in speculation on if he would be able to compete his term. Go figure!

2. George H. W. Bush

You may remember that the senior shrub had the stomach flu while traveling to Japan. He puked all over the Prime Minister’s lap and then passed out. While it was the topic of some funny Saturday Night Live skits and it did make the evening news, it certainly wasn’t trumped-up to be a health concern that meant the president was going to die! And thank goodness it wasn’t. (Remember, his vice president was Dan Quayle.)

3. George Washington

A little known, albeit, considering the time period, not too shocking, fact is George Washington also didn’t have this now expected immunity which accompanies the office of President of the United States. It is recorded that throughout Washington’s life he was often sick, surviving diphtheria, malaria, smallpox, tuberculosis, dysentery, pleurisy and pneumonia (some of those illnesses multiple times in his lifetime) and still lived to serve two full terms.

4. Harry Truman

In July 1952, the White House released a medical report which said the President was ill with strep throat. He was hospitalized for having three infections at once – strep throat, influenza and pneumonia. After nine days with the illness, like the rest of us who get sick and then well again, Truman returned to his job duties. The presidential archives note, “What is remarkable about that episode is how little the White House revealed about Truman’s illness and how accepting the press was with White House responses to its numerous questions about the President’s health.”

 5. Ronald Reagan

There are some reports that have come out since the 40th President died that say he was showing signs of his Alzheimer’s disease while in the White House. There are a few accounts of odd behavior, him “losing himself” and appearing “confused” at times. There is even an account from an aide who said Reagan was treated “with special care” in the White House but, because people liked him and there was “so much personal regard for him – everyone protected him.” Despite his slipping mental faculties, the press wasn’t covering his odd behavior every night on the evening news – although they should have been. THIS was an illness that impacted his ability to do his job.

Hillary Clinton, throughout her career, has been scrutinized to a degree like none other. This latest out of the series of baseless attacks will surely meet the same fate as the others.

She will keep on going, even if she does have to take a couple of days off work to recoup.

Featured image via video screen capture

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