'Butt of a Joke': What's the Difference Between Presidential Colonoscopies of Biden & Trump?

© REUTERS / JONATHAN ERNSTU.S. President Joe Biden gestures to reporters as he departs his annual physical at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, U.S. November 19, 2021.
U.S. President Joe Biden gestures to reporters as he departs his annual physical at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, U.S. November 19, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.11.2021
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On Friday morning, Vice President Kamala Harris took over as president for a little over one hour while President Joe Biden was under anesthesia for a colonoscopy as part of his yearly physical checkup.
President Biden's political rival and immediate predecessor, Donald Trump, refused anesthesia altogether and steadfastly endured the discomfort of the same medical procedure the president underwent, in order not to transfer his presidential powers to his VP Mike Pence, his former press sec Stephanie Grisham suggested in her memoir, according to reports.
According to extracts from Grisham's book "I'll Take Your Questions Now: What I Saw in The Trump White House," published on October 5, Trump paid a surprise visit to Walter Reed Medical Center, the usual hospital of presidents for their medical requirements, which was at the time said to be a partial physical. Eventually, it was confirmed to be a colonoscopy by the White House.
And Grisham reportedly said in the book that Trump was having a colonoscopy without anesthetic, a big difference between the way the Democrat President approached the procedure.
The reason for the secrecy and stoic approach was that Trump did not want to hand over the reins to Pence, even for a brief time, because it would be "showing weakness."
He also did not want to be "the butt of a joke" on late-night television, she reportedly suggested.
According to the Washington Post, citing Grisham, she claimed it was just a standard colonoscopy, describing the appointment as "a very common procedure" for which "a patient is sometimes put under" — and claiming that former President George W. Bush also had one.
Indeed, former President George W. Bush underwent a colonoscopy two times during his two terms and was the last to date to get a colonoscopy under anesthesia while in office. When he underwent the procedure in 2002 and 2007, he ceded power to then-Vice President Dick Cheney.
In general, colon cancer tests should begin around age 45, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A colonoscopy might take up to an hour to complete.

Is Biden Fit to Run the Country? Americans Split on President's Health

Biden's visit to Walter Reed on Friday comes amid concerns over the health of the country's oldest president, with Americans split on whether he is mentally fit and physically strong enough to manage the presidency, according to a new survey released earlier this week.
In a new Politico/Morning Consult poll, only 40% of people agreed with the assertion that Biden is "in good health," while 50% disagreed. When it comes to his mental health, the president received a lower score. When asked if Biden is "mentally fit," people were almost evenly divided: he is, according to 46% of respondents, while 48% disagree.
When asked if Biden is "stable," Americans are almost evenly divided, with 44% saying he is and 50% disagreeing. During her routine Friday press briefing, WH press secretary Jen Psaki declined to comment on the survey's conclusions.

"There is certainly quite a bit of conspiracy theory pushing out there on a range of social media platforms and even through the mouths of elected officials," she said.

Biden turns 79 on Saturday, and his doctor described him as "a healthy, vigorous, 78-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency" in December 2019 - during the presidential campaign.
And sure enough, while talking to reporters outside the White House after returning from the hospital on Friday, Biden gave little reason to doubt his own stability and suitability for such a high post, saying that he is in "great shape, and so, and I’m looking forward to celebrating my 58th birthday."
The public's perception of the president's health seems to be changing, with more people concerned about his fitness, per Politico poll results.
When the poll was last conducted in October 2020, people believed Biden was in good health by a 19-point margin, compared to the current 10-point gap. Furthermore, Americans believed Biden was mentally healthy by a 21-point edge in the October 2020 poll.
U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the crisis in Afghanistan during a speech in the East Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., August 16, 2021.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.08.2021
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Trump, who was 70-years-old at the time of his election, criticized Biden's stamina on the campaign trail last year, calling him "Sleepy Joe."
Trump's own first physical examination was revealed a year after he was sworn in, and he was said to be having "incredible genes" due to the 71-year-old's unhealthy diet and limited exercise, which apparently did not prevent the president from having "very, very good health," according to Dr. Ronny Jackson's evaluation at the time.
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