Shortly after Ronald Reagan’s landslide election to the presidency in 1980, Metropolitan Life Insurance Company produced a study of the effect of the presidency on life expectancy, finding that being president shortens a person’s life expectancy nearly as much as cigarette smoking. On average, being president reduced life expectancy by 3.9 years (or 5.2 years among 20th century presidents). Reagan, Met Life projected, could expect to live another 11 years, to 1992. Typical of Reagan to become the longest-lived ex-president in American history; his entire political career consisted of transcending the expectations of the legions of people who underestimated him.
More to come. . .