Capitol Riots: Calls For Removal Of Trump Get Louder

After a chaotic situation unfolded at the US Capitol following a pro-Trump mob swarming the House and Senate chambers on Wednesday, calls for the removal of President Donald Trump using the 25th Amendment have intensified in the country.

The rarely invoked 1967 amendment to the Constitution is the primary means for ensuring the government remains in operation if a sitting president is deemed unable to perform their duties while in office, reported The Hill.

Representative Adam Kinzinger on Thursday became the first GOP lawmaker to call for invoking the Constitution’s presidential removal mechanism, blaming him for Wednesday’s insurrection in Washington.

“Here’s the truth: The president caused this. The president is unfit and the president is unwell. And the president now must relinquish control of the executive branch voluntarily or involuntarily. It’s time to invoke the 25th Amendment and to end this nightmare,” Kinzinger said in a videotaped statement.

Maryland Republican Governor Larry Hogan on Thursday said that the US would be “better off” if Trump either resigned or was removed from office to allow Vice President Pence to serve out the final days of the president’s term.

Trump’s former chief of staff John Kelly today said he would vote to invoke the 25th Amendment if he was still serving in Trump’s Cabinet, reported CNN.

“The behavior yesterday and in the weeks and months before that has been outrageous from the President… What happened on Capitol Hill yesterday is a direct result of his poisoning the minds of people with the lies and the frauds,” he said.

24 hours after the incident, Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had called for using the constitutional mechanism to bring about a premature end to Trump’s presidency.

Pelosi said that in case of failure to invoke the Amendment, Congress would consider moving forward for the impeachment of the President.

On the other hand, some of Trump’s staunchest opponents say it’s absurd to think such a process could succeed in stripping Trump of his power before Inauguration Day, according to The Hill.

John Bolton, Trump’s onetime national security adviser-turned-critic, said attempting to remove Trump at this late stage could make the nation’s problems worse, rather than better.

“Section Four of the 25th Amendment, which I guess is the flavor du jour, is probably the worst written provision of the Constitution. It has never been used before, and the idea that you’re going to try to trigger it now for the first time and risk having two presidents simultaneously I just think is a fool’s errand,” Bolton told The Hill.

The involuntary removal provision of the amendment authorises the vice president and a majority of Cabinet members to declare a president “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”

If used successfully against Trump, it would elevate Pence to the position of acting president.

However, the statute also allows for the sitting president to challenge his Cabinet’s determination. To retake the reins of power, Trump would only need to declare to congressional leaders that he is able to do so. To override Trump’s challenge, the Cabinet would again have to declare him unfit, only this time with backing by a two-thirds vote in both the House and Senate.

Meanwhile, Trump has been asking aides and lawyers, including White House counsel Pat Cipollone, about his self-pardon power, multiple sources tell CNN. He has also asked for legal opinions on whether he has the authority to issue a self-pardon and has been advised on the potential political consequences.

This comes after Trump supporters swarmed the building to protest the Electoral College vote, forcing a lockdown and confrontations with police. Several police officers sustained injuries, while at least four people died during the scuffle.

Despite the violence, Congress reconvened in a late-night session after police secured the Capitol to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. (ANI)

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