Is Trump's doctor OK?
WASHINGTON -- Examining the White House physician's briefing on President Trump's physical, I was alarmed -- not about the president's health, but the doctor's.
Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson was so effusive in extolling the totally amazing, surpassingly marvelous, superbly stupendous and extremely awesome health of the president that the doctor sounded almost Trumpian. "The president's overall health is excellent," he said, repeating "excellent" eight times: "Hands down, there's no question that he is in the excellent range. … I put out in the statement that the president's health is excellent, because his overall health is excellent. … Overall, he has very, very good health. Excellent health."
And just how excellent is His Excellency's excellent health, doctor? "Incredible cardiac fitness," was Dr. Jackson's professional opinion. "He has incredible genes. … He has incredibly good genes, and it's just the way God made him."
Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN, making a rare house call to the White House briefing room, offered a second opinion. "He is taking a cholesterol-lowering medication, he has evidence of heart disease, and he's borderline obese," Gupta pointed out, citing Jackson's own findings. "Can you characterize that as excellent health?"
Jackson replied that Trump's heart is "in the excellent category."
And not just his heart! The doctor rhapsodized about Trump's vision, his stamina ("more energy than just about anybody") and above all his mental acuity, which, Jackson made sure to note, he examined only "because the president asked me to." Trump is "very sharp, and he's very articulate. … Very, very sharp, very intact. … Absolutely no cognitive or mental issues whatsoever. … The president did exceedingly well."
Sure, the guy could exercise and lose a few pounds. But "if he had a healthier diet over the last 20 years, he might live to be 200 years old," the White House physician proclaimed. Jackson even blessed Trump's habit of sleeping only four or five hours a night -- "probably one of the reasons why he's been successful" -- and his couch-potato tendencies: "He can watch as much TV as he wants."
And that time when Trump slurred his speech? Jackson blamed himself, for prescribing Sudafed. It was dry throat -- exactly the diagnosis offered by the White House spokeswoman!
Jackson, nearly equaling the prediction of Trump's personal doctor that he would be the healthiest president ever, predicted Trump would remain healthy "for the remainder of another term, if he's elected."
Jackson has been a well-regarded doctor. But since finding himself in Trump's orbit, he has adopted the hyperbolic style and excessive flattery of the boss that we see in other, previously respectable members of Trump's court.