The "obsession" with Hillary Clinton's coughing fits

Callum Borchers at the WaPo has a question for all of you conspiracy minded right wingnuts. What’s with the obsession over Hillary Clinton’s persistent coughing fits on the campaign trail? I suppose it’s a fair question since it gets a lot of press.

Hillary Clinton has had two public coughing fits in the past week. This is important because … well, it’s not explicitly clear.

The Weekly Standard simply posted video of Clinton’s coughing during a rally on Sunday in Bridgeport, Conn., along with the explanation she offered the crowd: “I have been talking non-stop for weeks now.” The conservative magazine didn’t attempt to get into the significance.

The Washington Free Beacon took a similar approach to Clinton’s coughing during a “Breakfast Club” radio interview last Monday, posting video and recapping the Democratic presidential front-runner’s exchange with the show’s hosts, who joked that she sounded as if she had been smoking medical marijuana and asked if she needed CPR. The conservative newspaper offered no broader implications.

Offered in evidence is the following video.

The article is worth a read because it addresses a very real question, though perhaps not one which should be specific to Clinton. Is she “healthy enough” to be President? For that matter, are any of the leading candidates (with the exception of Cruz) up to the demands of the office? Between Clinton, Sanders and Trump they account for more than 210 years of taking up space on the planet and I can attest that health questions become more relevant as the decades roll on by.

Clinton does actually have some health issues, as Borchers notes in the linked article. She’s been diagnosed with hypothyroidism (along with millions of Americans in her age group) and there are lingering questions about that spill she took in 2012 and the six month recovery which followed. But all in all she at least seems fairly healthy for a woman approaching the seven decade mark. Trump keeps going like the Energizer Bunny and if he has any health issues, nobody is talking. Even Bernie seems to have a lot of pep in his step.

But at that age, any of them are subject to a sudden turn for the worse. Should we care? Being President doesn’t really involve digging ditches and we’ve had presidents who managed to carry on in the job pretty well from a wheelchair. And if something seriously catastrophic were to happen, well… that’s why we have a Vice President. Personally, I think Hillary Clinton tends to cough a lot because she talks non-stop at campaign events. I’ve had to do some extended media swings myself and it can wear your voice out quickly. There are plenty of things to worry about in the event of a Hillary Clinton presidency (such as the collapse of the country) but her health isn’t one of them.

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