Rep. Ronny Jackson, a former White House doctor, sent a letter to President Biden on Thursday that called on him to prove his mental fitness to be president.
The letter, which was co-signed by 13 other Republican lawmakers, told the president that he seems to be suffering “mental decline and forgetfulness” based on numerous “gaffes.”
“We urge you to submit to a cognitive test immediately,” the lawmakers wrote.
“Unfortunately, your mental decline and forgetfulness have become more apparent over the past eighteen months. In March, you forgot the name of the Pentagon, the Department of Defense and the Defense Secretary, though you had said ‘Secretary Austin’ just a few moments prior. The official White House transcript reads ‘And I want to thank Sec- —— the former general —— I keep calling him “General.” My —— the guy that runs that outfit over there,’” the letter reads.
Three other episodes are fleshed out in detail by the letter, which also was sent to Drs. Kevin O’Connor and Anthony Fauci, respectively the White House physician and chief medical adviser.
The letter, a copy of which was posted by the U.K. Daily Mail, also calls for the results to be made public immediately by the White House.
“The American people should have absolute confidence in their president. They deserve to know that he or she can perform the duties demanded of the office, and they deserve to have full transparency on the mental state of their highest elected leader,” it said.
In a brief interview with The Hill, Mr. Jackson said the letter was occasioned by a string of public embarrassments.
“Just everything that has been going on for the last year and a half … [Mr. Biden] doesn’t know what’s going on, where he‘s at. He‘s very confused all the time,” Mr. Jackson, who served as White House physician for both the previous two presidents, said in a brief interview with The Hill.
Mr. Jackson pointed out to The Hill that former President Donald Trump set a precedent by taking a cognitive test in response to criticism from some Democrats that he was mentally unfit to be president and even should be removed by the vice president and Cabinet under the 25th Amendment.
Mr. Trump “aced it,” Mr. Jackson noted.
“So my point is that President Trump had to submit to that, even when I was his physician. I mean, the precedent’s already been set,” Mr. Jackson said. “We did it and President Trump did it. And Biden, in his position, and his medical team, need to follow the lead now.”