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Will Age Be an Issue in the 2020 Presidential Race?

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19.02.2019

With Bernie Sanders’s announcement of a 2020 presidential candidacy, we know for sure that there will be at least one aspirant for the job who would turn 80 during his first term in office. He’s the second septuagenarian to enter the race, counting the 72-year-old incumbent, though Elizabeth Warren will turn 70 this summer. And the field could soon include another candidate who would have an 80-candle birthday cake in the White House, Joe Biden (a little over a year younger than Sanders).

Will our budding gerontocracy be an issue during the nominating or general election stages of the 2020 campaign?

The very idea seems to infuriate fans of Biden and Sanders, who tend to brush off questions about their heroes’ ages by denouncing ageism, touting their vigor as compared to the junk-food-loving and sedentary Trump, or pointing at each other (if Biden can run, so can Bernie, and vice versa). But it was an issue in the presidential campaigns of the two nonincumbent septuagenarian major-party nominees before Trump (Bob Dole in 1996........

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