Former Vice President Joe Biden is set to take South Carolina on Saturday, but a recent gaffe sparked concerns about the state of his mental acuity.
After Biden confidently declared at the South Carolina Democratic Party’s First in the South Dinner on Monday that he’s “running for the United States Senate,” former White House physician Ronny Jackson came forward and said that Biden may need to “get some cognitive testing done.”
Jackson served as White House physician for both Barack Obama and Donald Trump over a span of six years. He is now running for Congress in Texas’ 13th congressional district.
During his address to the attendees of the dinner, Biden appealed to South Carolina Democrats for help, saying:
“You’re the ones who sent Barack Obama the presidency. And I have a simple proposition here: I’m here to ask you for your help … My name’s Joe Biden. I’m a Democratic candidate for the United States Senate. Look me over. If you like what you see, help out. If not, vote for the other Biden. Give me a look, though, OK?”
In response to the unsettling video clip of the statement that went viral almost immediately, Jackson tweeted, “Remember the cognitive test I gave @realDonaldTrump? The one he aced! Sounds like somebody else might need some testing done!! Scary!!”
Biden’s very-public gaffe came just days after he told voters ahead of the Nevada caucuses last week that once elected in November, if his mental acuity declined to the point that he wouldn’t be able to “fully exert all the energy” needed to be president, he wouldn’t run for a second term.
Despite Biden’s dramatic flub, the Hill reported on Wednesday that Biden holds a 22-point lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in South Carolina.
Sanders recently snagged frontrunner status after his wins in Nevada and New Hampshire but has dropped to 3rd in projections behind Biden and billionaire Tom Steyer for Saturday’s caucus.