One has to reach back to the likes of Grover Cleveland (first elected in 1884) and William McKinley (1896) for other similarly oversize commanders-in-chief, our colleague Emily Heil reports.
And not only are there no overweight presidents in the modern era, there aren’t even any pudgy candidates in recent memory, says Allan Lichtman, a presidential historian and American University professor. He credits the dawning of the TV era and the modern emphasis on physical fitness for the slimming down of politicians. “It reflects what’s happening in our culture,” he says. “Prior to the television age, people hardly ever saw the president.”
Rebecca Puhl, a Yale psychologist and an expert on weight stigma, says overweight candidates face deep bias and discrimination that are getting worse — even as the American obesity rate ticks up. “There are so many negative weight-based stereotypes — people think overweight and obese people are lazy, out of control, or lacking in discipline and willpower,” she says.
Christie, if he runs and fails, would be . . . the biggest loser.
A budget-office deficit
In these days of budget woes, you’d think there would be some urgency to fill the No. 2 job at the Office of Management and Budget. But Senate Republicans have been holding up the nomination of White House aide
, who was apparently handpicked by OMB Director Jack Lew to be his deputy and nominated back in January.
A number of GOP senators, including Jeff Sessions (Ala.), the ranking Republican on the Budget Committee, have strong questions about her qualifications. And Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), who’s not a committee member, is said to have a hold on the nomination based on a demand for administration documents or information on an unrelated matter.
“I hope and understand that Senator Kyl is working with the administration on something that will clear this nomination,” Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said on the Senate floor this week, adding he was not going to move to break the hold immediately “but all my Republican colleagues should be prepared” for a vote to break the hold next week. “I hope Senator Kyl will allow this nomination to go forward after his request is satisfied,” he added.
Kyl’s office declined to comment.
We’re No. 1! Except, of course, when we’re No. 2. For example, at the United Nations General Assembly world leader session each fall, Brazil is always the first country to speak, followed by the United States.