In a presidential field where three leading candidates—including the incumbent, Donald Trump—would become the oldest president in United States history if they won, Joe Biden is the oldest of all. As the former vice president goes around telling people to “go to Joe 30330” or launches into a free-associative ramble in response to a question about racial justice, political observers are arguing about whether, at age 76, Biden is limited by the effects of his age—and also about whether it’s fair to argue about it.
“We’ve had three baby boomer presidents, and not much good has happened in any of their presidencies,” Mickey, a Democrat from Phoenix, told me over the phone. “It’s time for the baby boomers to get off the stage and maybe let the next generation start to run things.”
Mickey didn’t mean his own cohort should take over—he’s 72. With Biden, Trump, and Bernie Sanders all pushing back the outer limits of candidate age, and Elizabeth Warren not far behind them, I set out to ask people who have personally experienced the aging process what they thought about Biden, aging, and the presidency. I found some through Twitter and some hanging around tourist hotspots in D.C. All in all, I talked to more than a dozen Americans over 60, some of whom preferred to omit their last names while speaking frankly about politics.