Donald Trump: Height and Weight Documentation


Introduction
 
Donald Trump is both the oldest person ever to enter the Presdency and the most scrutinized when it comes to health. Much of the health scrutiny goes to trivial matters untied to the nation's welfare. As always, Dr. Zebra here approaches his subject from the vantage of a physician assessing all aspects of his patient's life that could fall under medical and physiological provenance, so while he does not shirk from covering the many matters of lesser importance (sigh), he would prefer your attention be directed to the more consequential topics of Trump's sleep health and vascular health.

Readers may notice that this page has more references than most others (but not vs. Abraham Lincoln, for whom Dr. Zebra has compiled an 820-page book). The reasons are: (a) the aforementioned intensity of attention, and (b) the need with this President to be especially attentive to documentary evidence. Regarding the latter, his "aggressively unreliable" nature has already been noted 1 which has specifically extended to matters of health in several known instances:

  1. Documentary evidence shows he is (at best) not consistent about the ultra-trivial matter of his height (see below).
  2. Trump himself wrote the inanity-filled initial release of medical information in 2015 that was purported to come from his physician. MORE
  3. While being interviewed about his just-disclosed health information on Fox News during the 2016 campaign MORE, Trump made this particularly worrisome statement regarding transparency:
    I did all the tests. I did every test. I did it last week and the samples all came back, and I guess I wouldn't be talking to you right now if they were bad. If they were bad, I would say let's sort of skip this, right?
    (In a related point, Dr. Zebra does not believe that he "did all the tests." See below.)
  4. Trump's medical disclosures during the 2016 campaign did not include all the medications he was taking. MORE
  5. The official explanations for Trump's abrupt hospital visit in November 2019 are so obviously incomplete as to be sure evidence of information hiding. (See below.)
How, then, should one approach information provided by President Trump and his associates? When taking an academic approach, Dr. Zebra follows these heuristics:
  1. If any possible benefit could accrue to Trump from some particular statement, any truth in the statement is coincidental.
  2. Unlike most human communication, consistency and repetition do not increase the probability of a statement's truth. SEE BELOW


height, weight, and obesity
 
Several height and weight measurements for Trump are available MORE.

Primary documentation from government sources -- his draft card in 1964 and his drivers license in 2012 -- gives Trump's height as 6 feet 2 inches SEE BELOW. And, during debates in the 2016 presidential campaign, it was apparent that another debater, former Gov. Jeb Bush (6 feet 3 inches), is taller than Trump 3.

Thus, there is no doubt that Trump is 6 feet 2 inches tall (at most).

Since announcing his presidential candidacy, however, Trump and his doctors have claimed he is 6 feet 3 inches tall MORE. Why the discrepancy? Speculations in 2016, when Trump weighed 236 pounds, noted that he would be classified as "obese" if he were 6'2'', but would be classified as merely "overweight" if he were 6'3'' 4. Gaining to 243 pounds in early 2019 MORE, Trump now rates as obese even if he were 6 feet 3 inches tall.

He has stated (2016) that "the one thing I would like to do is be able to drop 15, 20 pounds. It would be good." 2

Speculations that Trump's disclosed weight far below his actual weight were known as the "girther" conspiracy, in mocking reference to the fatuous "birther" accusations that President Obama was born outside the United States 5.

Comment: It says something when even the height and weight of the President -- which are the simplest and most straightforward parameters conceivable -- are uncertain and thought to be manipulated. Physician participation in spreading misinformation hurts the profession (at the least).


More...
His draft card from 1964 states (in box 8) a height of 6' 2'' 6:

 

His 2012 New York state drivers license (obtained from public records of the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control through an open-records request, related to a winery Trump co-owns in central Virginia) also shows a height of 6'2'' 7:

Trump continues to claim he is six-three.

  • March 2016: After an election opponent says he has small hands and is six-two, Trump responds "He said I had small hands. Actually I'm 6'3'' not 6'2''. They're not small, are they?" 8
  • January 2019: At least three photographs on Trump's Facebook and Instagram sites have been altered to make him thinner. This was deduced by comparing the photos to the originals from White House sources 9. (One photo was also altered to make his fingers longer.) Comment: Photographic alterations have been a part of Presidential image-making since at least 1860 with Abraham Lincoln's photographer, Mathew Brady.

It may seem hard to believe, in the face of so many statements from Trump, that he is not six-three, but repetition of inaccuracies is his way, as illustrated in this quote unrelated to medicine 10:

His repeated claims, for example, that he actually won the popular vote -- is immutable and has had a "numbing effect" on people who work with him, said Tony Schwartz, his ghostwriter on The Art of the Deal 11. "He wears you down," Mr. Schwartz said.
Cited Sources
  1. Kruse, Michael. The Mystery of Mary Trump. (Published November/December 2017. Downloaded on 2019-12-06.) Available on the web: https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/11/03/mary-macleod-trump-donald-trump-mother-biography-mom-immigrant-scotland-215779
  2. Cillizza, Chris; Blake, Aaron. Donald Trump's interview with Dr. Oz was just as amazingly strange as we thought it would be. (Published 15 September, 2016. Downloaded on 2019-12-01.) Available on the web: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/09/15/donald-trumps-visit-with-dr-oz-was-just-as-amazing-as-you-though-it-would-be/
        

    Comment: Also includes annotations by Cillizza and Blake. Their interview transcript is archived here: MORE

  3. Mathews, Jay. Trump is obsessed with height. Now he's trying to weaponize it in the election. (Published 12 Feb. 2020. Downloaded on 2020-02-12.) Available on the web: https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/trump-is-obsessed-with-height-now-hes-trying-to-weaponize-it-in-the-election/2020/02/11/030cc552-484f-11ea-ab15-b5df3261b710_story.html
  4. Matthews, Susan. Everyone says Trump is 6-foot-2. so why does Trump's doctor say he's 6-foot-3? A theory. Slate. 15 Sept. 2016.   Available on the web at: http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/09/15/how_tall_is_donald_trump_really.html
  5. Kranz, Michal. Trump's reported weight has ignited a 'girther' conspiracy alleging that the president weighs more than 239 pounds. Business Insider. Jan. 17, 2018.   Available on the web at: https://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-the-girther-movement-trump-weight-2018-1
  6. Selective Service System. [Documentation related to the military draft]. . 13 Sept. 2016.
        

    Comment: Obtained from The Smoking Gun reference. Scans available here -->   MORE.

  7. Samuelsohn, Darren. Trump's driver's license casts doubt on height claims. Politico. 23 Dec. 2016.   Available on the web at: http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/trump-drivers-license-height-232948
  8. Bump, Philip. Are Donald Trump's fingers weirdly short? An investigation. (Published 1 Mar. 2016. Downloaded on 2016-03-10.) Available on the web: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/03/01/are-donald-trumps-fingers-weirdly-short-an-investigation
  9. Novak, Matt. President Trump Posts Altered Photos to Facebook and Instagram That Make Him Look Thinner. (Published Jan. 21, 2019. Downloaded on 2019-12-18.) Available on the web: https://gizmodo.com/president-trump-posts-altered-photos-to-facebook-and-in-1831909849
  10. Haberman, Maggie; Thrush, Glenn; Baker, Peter. The President's Periodic Physical Exam. (Published Dec. 9, 2017. Downloaded on 2018.) Available on the web: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/09/us/politics/donald-trump-president.html
  11. Trump, Donald J.; Schwartz, Tony. Trump: The Art of the Deal. New York: Random House, 1987.
        

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