Sep 18, 2019

Jimmy Carter: I hope there's an age limit on presidency

Jimmy Carter. Photo: China News Service/Visual China Group via Getty Images

Former President Jimmy Carter said Tuesday he couldn't have managed the role of commander in chief at 80 years old — the age 2020 candidates Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders would turn while in office if they were elected.

What he's saying: "I hope there’s an age limit," Carter said with a laugh while answering audience questions during his annual report at the Carter Center in Atlanta, AP reports. "If I were just 80 years old, if I was 15 years younger, I don’t believe I could undertake the duties I experienced when I was president."

The things I faced in foreign affairs, I don’t think I could undertake them at 80 years old. At 95, it’s out of the question. I’m having a hard time walking."

Context: Per AP, Carter, who's due to celebrate his 95th birthday on Oct. 1, made the remarks in response to a light-hearted inquiry about whether he had considered running in 2020 since he’s still constitutionally allowed another term.

The big picture: As Axios' Jim VandeHei notes, every public poll shows the Democratic 2020 race is a 3-way brawl between 70-somethings who rose to prominence in the Senate.

  • Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are 76, 78 and 70, respectively. But as VandeHei points out, age doesn't dictate sensibility: Warren was an early blogger and is legendary on the selfies front.
  • The Democratic nominee will run against 73-year-old President Trump.

Go deeper: The Democrats' 3-way, 70-something race

Editor's note: This post has been corrected to reflect the correct ages of the 2020 candidates.

Go deeper

The wreckage of summer

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

We usually think of Memorial Day as the start of the summer, with all of the fun and relaxation that goes with it — but this one is just going to remind us of all of the plans that have been ruined by the coronavirus.

Why it matters: If you thought it was stressful to be locked down during the spring, just wait until everyone realizes that all the traditional summer activities we've been looking forward to are largely off-limits this year.

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 5,410,228 — Total deaths: 345,105 — Total recoveries — 2,169,005Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 1,643,499 — Total deaths: 97,722 — Total recoveries: 366,736 — Total tested: 14,163,915Map.
  3. World: White House announces travel restrictions on Brazil, coronavirus hotspot in Southern Hemisphere Over 100 coronavirus cases in Germany tied to single day of church services — Boris Johnson backs top aide amid reports that he broke U.K. lockdown while exhibiting symptoms.
  4. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks headed into Memorial Day weekend Report finds "little evidence" coronavirus under control in most statesHurricanes, wildfires, the flu could strain COVID-19 response
  5. Economy: White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Public employees brace for layoffs.
  6. Federal government: Trump attacks a Columbia University study that suggests earlier lockdown could have saved 36,000 American lives.
  7. What should I do? Hydroxychloroquine questions answeredTraveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

The CDC is warning of potentially "aggressive rodent behavior" amid a rise in reports of rat activity in several areas, as the animals search further for food while Americans stay home more during the coronavirus pandemic.

By the numbers: More than 97,700 people have died from COVID-19 and over 1.6 million have tested positive in the U.S. Over 366,700 Americans have recovered and more than 14.1 million tests have been conducted.