Should Washington’s elderly leaders cede power to a younger generation? Americans weigh

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Americans in the nation’s capital shared their thoughts on whether older political leaders should make way for younger figures to take power.

“We need fresh blood in this to understand how people live in the United States now,” one woman, Shanna, told Fox News. “The people who run this country have no idea how I live – as a single mother – paying check to pay check.”

Joe Biden became the oldest president ever elected when he won in 2016. He would be 82 at the start of his second term if his 2024 candidacy is successful. Former President Trump, who was 70 when he was sworn in, previously held the title of longest-serving chief executive.

“Right now the person in the position has a lot of political experience, so he has some ideas of how to make things work,” one woman, Olivia, told Fox News. “At the same time, you kind of want to have someone new there in the next term just because age is a factor.”

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President Biden talks about inflation and supply chain issues.
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President Biden talks about inflation and supply chain issues.
((AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes))

“You want them to be able to do their job and not have any memory issues,” she continued.

The average age of the Senate was about 64 at the start of this session, according to the Congressional Research Service. The Census Bureau, meanwhile, estimated that the median age in the United States was just over 38 in 2020.

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Congressional leaders in the legislature are even older: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, 82; Senate Majority Leader Chuck Sumer is 71; and the Republican minority in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, is 80 years old. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, by comparison, is a 57-year-old.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks alongside Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks alongside Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

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“We need fresh ideas, we need term limits, we need people who are truly living an American lifestyle,” said one woman, Vicky.

“They don’t understand how real Americans live,” she continued. “They never did, so they can’t even relate to their own constituents.”

Sitting on a bench near the National Mall, a woman named Vicky shares her thoughts on the age of political leaders.

Sitting on a bench near the National Mall, a woman named Vicky shares her thoughts on the age of political leaders.
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

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Some, however, told Fox News there were advantages to having older American leaders.

“Age gives wisdom to most people. And with wisdom, of course, experience,” another woman, Estela, told Fox News.

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