Amid renewed criticism of his COVID-19 response and new controversy over his decision to sic federal forces on Democratic-led cities, President Trump on Wednesday night resurrected his story about a 2018 cognitive test he insists he got a “perfect mark” on, now claiming he also got “extra points” for a particularly impressive feat.
The feat? Repeating the words “person, woman, man, camera, TV” in the right order.
In recent weeks, the president has repeatedly called on former Vice President Joe Biden to take the Montreal Cognitive Assessment while bragging that he left doctors “very surprised” that he scored perfectly on the exam. Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, however, pointed out to Trump that the exam isn’t actually hard, as it is meant to test cognitive impairment.
“They have a picture and it says ‘what’s that’ and it’s an elephant,” Wallace said to Trump on Sunday. Trump insisted at the time that other questions were much harder and Wallace “couldn’t answer many of the questions” while claiming he personally “answered all 35 questions correctly.”
During a Wednesday interview with Fox News medical contributor Dr. Marc Siegel, Trump was again obsessed with how well he did on the MoCA, a 30-point assessment that is administered over 10 minutes.
Saying he took his cognitive test “probably a year ago or less than a year ago,” he went on to recount that he asked former White House physician Dr. Ronny Jackson if there was some kind of “acuity test” he could take, which occurred in early 2018.
“He said there actually is, and he named it, whatever it might be,” Trump said. “And it was 30 or 35 questions—the first questions are very easy and the last questions are much more difficult. Like a memory question.”
Describing the memory recall portion of the test, Trump said he was asked to repeat the words “person, woman, man, camera, TV,” prompting him to act out the whole thing.
“And then, 10 minutes, 15 minutes later, remember the first question, not the first but the tenth question? Give us that again,” Trump said, playing the administrating doctor. “And you go ‘person, woman, man, camera, TV.’ If you get it in order, you get extra points!”
Trump claimed the doctors told him that “nobody gets in order” and while it isn’t easy, it “was easy” for him. Adding that the doctors then “go back” to that question “20-25 minutes later,” Trump repeated the phrase before insisting this left the doctors in awe.
“They say, ‘That is amazing. How did you do that?” Trump declared. “I do it because I have, like, a good memory. Because I’m cognitively there.”
Reiterating that Biden should take the test, Trump went on to claim that the “perfect mark” he received on the exam put questions of his mental fitness to rest.
“It’s not that easy, but as soon as they announced my score and the test, all of this stuff went away about me,” he proclaimed. “Remember, they were talking about the 25th Amendment and nonsense. They said, wow. Even the enemies, they don’t say that anymore. But they do say it about Joe Biden.”
Recent polls, however, show Americans believe Biden’s cognitive abilities match or exceed the president’s. A Fox News poll reveals that 47 percent believe Biden has the mental soundness to be president, compared to 43 percent who feel Trump does.