A Democratic Congressman is introducing a bill which would require presidential candidates to undergo a mental health exam before running for office — a clear broadside at Trump after the president tweeted he’s a “very stable genius.”
Brendan F. Boyle, from the 13th District in Pennsylvania, introduced the STABLE GENIUS Act on Tuesday, otherwise known as the “Standardizing Testing and Accountability Before Large Elections Giving Electors Necessary Information for Unobstructed Selection” Act.
The President believes he is a "stable genius." I do not. Today, I introduced the
Act to ensure that Presidential candidates are fit to lead. pic.twitter.com/ZalCqySlo8
— Rep. Brendan Boyle (@CongBoyle) January 9, 2018
“President Trump’s reckless, erratic behavior has exposed a critical flaw in our existing election process,” Rep. Boyle said in a statement. “Before voting for the highest office in the land, Americans have a right to know whether an individual has the physical and mental fitness to serve as the President of the United States.” Boyle added that he believed that the American people needed to be proactive to ensure that “a situation like this does not arise again”.
The STABLE GENIUS Act would require presidential candidates to file a report with the Federal Election Commission (FEC), certifying that they had undergone a medical examination with a medical office under the Secretary of the Navy’s jurisdiction. The report would then be available to the public online.
An Act which directly questions the stability of the President, of course, faces long odds in the Republican-controlled Congress, but it continues to focus attention on Trump’s mental health, which has again risen to prominence in recent weeks.
Last Wednesday, the newly-published book Fire and Fury, by Michael Wolff, claimed that the Trump administration was beset by infighting and lurched from crisis to crisis. Trump meanwhile was portrayed as a childlike figure who has little-to-no-idea about the intricacies of policy debates. In a piece published in the Hollywood Reporter on January 4th, Wolff claimed that when talking to sources in the White House for his book “my indelible impression…is that they all — 100 per cent — came to believe he was incapable of functioning in his job.”
Trump, naturally, did not take too kindly to Wolff’s claims, firing out a series of tweets claiming that the “Fake News Mainstream Media” was using their “Ronald Reagan playbook” to question his mental capacity. “Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart,” Trump tweeted. “I think that [I] would qualify as not smart, but genius… and a very stable genius at that.!”