The Presidential Fitness Test

Hosted by Michelle Cottle, Ross Douthat, Carlos Lozada and Lydia Polgreen

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Who’s your ideal American president? A strategic thinker who is calm in a crisis? A charmer with boundless aplomb? Perhaps a principled leader with an unwavering moral compass?

This week, the hosts discuss what voters expect from “America’s daddy” and whether concerns about President Biden’s and Donald Trump’s fitness are overblown, given the history of the office they each hope to keep or retake.

(A full transcript of this audio essay will be available within 24 hours of publication in the audio player above.)

Credit…Illustration by The New York Times; Photograph by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Mentioned in this episode:

  • “Unmaking the Presidency: Donald Trump’s War on the World’s Most Powerful Office,” by Susan Hennessey and Benjamin Wittes

  • “Joe Biden: The Life, the Run, and What Matters Now,” by Evan Osnos

Thoughts? Email us at [email protected].

Follow our hosts on X: Michelle Cottle (@mcottle), Ross Douthat (@DouthatNYT) and Carlos Lozada (@CarlosNYT).

“Matter of Opinion” is produced by Derek Arthur, Sophia Alvarez Boyd and Phoebe Lett. It is edited by Jordana Hochman. Mixing by Carole Sabouraud. Original music by Isaac Jones, Efim Shapiro, Carole Sabouraud, Sonia Herrero and Pat McCusker. Our fact-checking team is Kate Sinclair, Mary Marge Locker and Michelle Harris. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta and Kristina Samulewski. Our executive producer is Annie-Rose Strasser.

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