UNITED STATES—In February, Fiscal note reported that the average age of the 118th Congress is 58 years old. In January, NBC noted that the 118th Congress is the 3rd oldest since 1789. Multiple news outlets are writing about the ages of members of the House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, and the President of the United States.
Joe Biden is currently the oldest person to ever serve as U.S. President. Before him, the oldest serving President was Donald J. Trump. Biden will be 81 in November. Trump turns 77 in June. Trump has already announced his candidacy for President in 2024 Joe Biden is also considering a run. According to Ballotpedia, Biden has not yet announced his bid for POTUS.
Some may see this as ageism, discrimination against the elderly. Age discrimination is illegal. Age limits are not. The truth is that Americans have a deep interest in making and breaking records. The multitude of copies of the Guinness Book of World records proves that point on its own.
At 89, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) is the oldest living U.S. Senator. She has recently had to step down from her Senate duties while she continues to recover from shingles. She will be 90 in June.
Chuck Grassley (R-IA) comes in a close second behind Feinstein. Grassley turns 90 in January 2024. He did not ever miss a roll call vote in 27 years, and only missed that one because of COVID restrictions in 2020.
Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) will be 82 in September. Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is 81.
The House of Representatives has its share of elderly representatives as well. Though this does not discount their contribution to society in any way. It does affect their ability to finish out a term. A mandatory retirement age may be in order just because of one’s life expectancy.
Grace Napolitano (D-CA) is 86. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) Maxine Waters (D-CA) will be 85 in August. Hal Rogers (R-KY) is 85. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) is 84. Nancy Pelosi is 83. Danny Davis (D-IL) is 81. Jim Clyburn (D-SC) is 82.
The Trump Administration proposed 6-year term limits for Congress and 12-year term limits for the Senate to no avail. Democrats fought the issue. Term limits have been the same since 1995.
You may ask, why does it matter? When it comes to politicians and world leaders, it could be more than just a passing fascination. On April 13, the Center of Disease Control reported that the U.S. life expectancy has declined to 76.4 years. This is the shortest life expectancy for Americans in close to two decades. The people on this list are not being targeted for their age. They’ve already outlived the CDC’s 2023 life expectancy for the average American.