Most presidencies follow grueling schedules. However, President Joe Biden has seen fit to keep a 30-hour workweek, which has led some to question whether he is up to his job at his age.
At 80, Biden is the oldest man to have ever held the Oval Office. Most of Biden’s events happen between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. His former Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, “President Biden does nothing at 9 a.m.,” during an appearance on MSNBC. She also stated that Biden was a night owl, not unlike Reagan who often brought papers into the White House residence to work on.
Axios reported in late April that White House staffers find it difficult to schedule events with the president at certain hours. As of the time of Axios’ reporting, Biden had held four events before 10 a.m., a dozen events after 6 p.m., and had 12 full weekends without any planned events.
He has dismissed concerns over his age.
“I can’t even say — I guess, how old I am, I can’t even say the number. It doesn’t — it doesn’t register with me. And — but the only thing I can say is that one of the things that people are going to find out, they’re going to see a race and they’re going to judge whether or not I have it or don’t have it,” Joe Biden said in April during a press conference with the South Korean president.
Trump and Reagan Known For Erratic Schedules
Only two other presidents can compare to Biden.
His predecessor and fellow senior citizen, Donald Trump, kept unstructured nine-hour days.
Former President Ronald Reagan similarly kept an abbreviated work schedule as president as he aged well into his 70s. He was known to take Wednesdays off and Fridays he would leave for the presidential retreat at Camp David. Reagan usually worked from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. as president in his office.
“Show me an executive who works long, hard hours, and I’ll show you a bad executive,” Reagan quipped during the 1980 presidential campaign.
White House Disputes Reporting About Biden’s Schedule
The White House has disputed reports that Biden has a lax work ethic.
“To quote a young, healthy, and capable AP reporter’s tweet about the president energetically mixing with service members in the middle of a long trip back to the U.S. from Asia: ‘I am so tired,’” Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates told Axios.
Axios charged that the White House was keeping guard over Biden to protect him from reporters as he ages.
Mixed Comments About Biden’s Work Ethic
“Our 80-year-old president has a six-hour window for public events, reading off a teleprompter, taking few questions, five days a week,” tweeted National Review political correspondent Jim Geraghty. “And the plan is for him to keep doing this for the next five and a half years.”
However, Matt Duss, a former aide to Sen. Bernie Sanders, quipped on Twitter in response to the Axios story about Biden’s work ethic, “Biden should run on the 30-hour workweek and end the race today.”
John Rossomando is a senior analyst for Defense Policy and served as Senior Analyst for Counterterrorism at The Investigative Project on Terrorism for eight years. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, The National Interest, National Review Online, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award for his reporting.