The Constitution requires that “No person . . . shall be eligible to [the office of President] who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States” (Art. II, Sec. 1). Does this mean that a candidate shouldn’t be questioned about his abilities and limited experience if he is constitutionally qualified at just thirty-six years old? Ronald Reagan was thought by some to be too old. He was 69 when he took office in 1981. Reagan turned concern about his age on its head during his 1984 re-election campaign when he promised not to “exploit, for political purposes,” the “youth and inexperience” of his 56-year-old Democratic challenger, Walter Mondale. The age question haunted John McCain as well. Questions about age are important, and so are questions about religion.

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