Would you vote for a president on psych meds?

Inspired by: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=268676

While I am sure that the story in that thread is a joke, the idea of it still intrigues me. Many of us are, or have been on psychiatric medication. Whether anti-depressants, anti-anxiety, or treatments for ADD, medicating mental disorders has become commonplace in America today.

Would you have any trouble with a president who is, or at one point was, on such medications?

I don’t think I’d have a problem with it. Given the choice between someone I suspected was more than a little mentally off kilter but “does not have a history of mental illness”, meaning, had not been diagnosed because he/she hadn’t sought the services of a psychiatrist and someone I knew was taking psych meds under the careful monitoring of a mental health professional, I’d go with the latter. At least then I would know that the problem was being dealt with.

I think it depends on the medication. I doubt that I’d blink at anti-depressants, but I would be hesitant to get behind someone who needed antipsychotics to manage day to day.

I know that in many ways that’s not entirely logical, (ie; depression can be just a debilitating as psychosis, and people on anti-psychotics can do very well,) but that’s where my comfort threshold seems to be, for all that.

Better a President on psych meds than a President who acts like he needs them but doesn’t have any.

Note that one recent president, George Bush I, was on a psychiatric med during his presidency. You say you never heard that? Well, that’s because they were thyroid hormones. The difference in mental states between a hypothyroid person on and off meds can be quite drastic.

But the “media” thinks that’s okay, it’s not really a psychiatric drug (although it certainly acts like one as a major effect).

So you have a schizoid (!) society: These drugs over here that affect mental state are okay but those drugs over there that affect mental state are bad. If you ask why, you just get the “here” vs. “there” story told over and over.

As long as the “media” perpetuates this peculiar distinction, most people aren’t going to catch on.

So I’m fine with any controlled condition where if the person goes off drugs he isn’t going to Push The Button because his brain chemicals tell him to. But since most Americans are very uninformed about such matters, I’m not holding my breath.

I’d rather have a President who’s on medication under proper supervision from a doctor than a President who doesn’t feel it’s worth his while to read the news.

I voted for Lawton Chiles (Gov of Florida) in 1990 and he was often attacked for using psych medicine.

You don’t have to be crazy to take that job, but perhaps it helps.

Seriously? I’d try to judge a politician by his behavior and his ability to work with the folks he/she has to work with. If George or John find they can cope with the demands of the job better with the aid of lithium, xanax, marijuana, ecstasy, or Jack Daniels, and they manage to maintain the proverbial even keel and the necessary awareness of what they’re doing and how the events of the day fit into the larger picture, then having it come out that they’re using isn’t going to deter me from voting for them. (i.e., for the one whose policies, belief systems, leadership qualities, and loyalties I most value, which in my case would be John Kerry)

I would’ve voted for Boris Yeltsin, had I been a Russian, at least through several of his first iterations.

An admittedly inhaling Bill Clinton could have received my vote with no misgivings.

John Kerry could be speedballing heroin and cocaine ten times a day and I’d still vote for him in November. Reciprocally, my incredibly low opinion of Mr. Bush’s performance would not be mitigated or exacerbated by either hearing that he takes psych meds or that someone thinks he should but he doesn’t.

I certainly would, depending on the condition of course. Having a bi-polar president whose medicine is only marginally effective may not be such a good thing.

It would depend on several factors, including diagnosis and history. As *Larry Mudd suggested, there is a difference between depression and psychosis. That said, history matters. For instance, someone with a history of a depression who has had or has acted on suicidal ideations will likely not get my vote. Likewise, someone who has a history of coming off and going on meds (non-compliance), or who has a history of multiple hospitalizations won’t get my vote either.

I probably would, as long as it wasn’t for Psychotic Homicidal Fugue Syndrome, or something like that.

But for something like depression, or OCD, or maybe Bipolar disorder, I’d probably still vote for 'em. As long as they weren’t drooling and twitching. :smiley: :wink:

And only if it was a Democrat, 'natch.

Nope.