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Media Bias Blazed Brightly During Trump Health Press Conference

01-17-2018
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Donald Trump White House AP
Donald Trump White House AP

WASHINGTON - From the redundant to the ridiculous, White House physician U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson took questions from reporters about President Donald Trump's health for nearly an hour Tuesday.

It was an unprecedented exercise that yielded queries like, "Does the president watch too much TV?" 

"I'm not gonna comment on that - I might comment on that if that were my 5-year-old," Dr. Jackson responded. 

Another reporter asked, "Do you have any concerns about the president using Twitter?" 

And despite President Barack Obama's history of tobacco and drug use, one reporter asked, "Does the president ask you about how he could follow his predecessor's example to be as fit as Barack Obama was?"

The same reporter also asked, "Do you keep a tally of how much golf the U.S. president plays - that is something the press office repeatedly does not tell us. Do you keep a tally and do you consider that exercise?"

"Is it healthy for the president to play golf?" another reporter asked.

Dr. Jackson says golf does provide exercise along with stress relief.

Another journalist zeroed in on rumors that President Trump is a "germophobe."

"Some of the president's friends have told reporters in the past that they think that he's a germophobe, he washes his hands obsessively and is concerned about that. Do you see any indication of that type of behavior being around the president?" he asked.

"I mean, he washes his hands frequently,"  Dr. Jackson replied. "He uses Purell - and as many hands as he shakes in a day he'd be a fool not to."

The same reporter followed up with, "Other OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) behaviors? Any other OCD behaviors along those lines?" His question was ignored.

Cognitive testing is not part of the annual presidential physical requirements. Dr. Jackson says he would not have recommended one since he sees the president daily and has no concerns about his cognitive ability. 

"The president is mentally very sharp," he said.

In fact, Dr. Jackson says to his knowledge, no other president in the history of the United States has ever taken a cognitive screening while in office; however, President Trump asked to do so. He scored 30 out of 30 on the Montreal Cognitive Assessment test. 

However, despite the results, and Dr. Jackson's insistence that in his professional opinion the president is "fit for duty," the press corps focused intently on that part of the exam.

"On what basis would you - and this is just a philosophical question - advise the Cabinet that the president is unable to discharge his duties? How does that bar get met?" one reporter asked.

When asked to weigh in on mental health professionals who have suggested President Trump is showing signs of dementia or other mental issues, Dr. Jackson called that "tabloid psychology." 

When asked how President Trump could be in such excellent health despite a diet that's not always healthy, little sleep and little to no exercise, Dr. Jackson responded that he simply must have good genes. 

"That's just the way God made him," he said.

Dr. Jackson says, hands down, no other president has ever offered as much information about his annual physical and mental health as President Trump.

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