Pelosi, Schumer call on cabinet to kick Trump, threaten impeachment
Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer called on President Donald Trump to be immediately removed from office, saying he had incited an insurgency against the government by cheering on the crowd that stormed the Capitol on Wednesday.
Schumer, who is set to become the majority leader, said in a statement that Vice President Mike Pence should invoke the 25th Amendment to the Constitution, using cabinet support to take over from the Oval Office until ‘at Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20.
“If the vice president and cabinet refuse to rise, Congress should meet again to remove the president,” Schumer said in a statement.
Schumer is the most senior official yet to call for Trump’s impeachment. A number of grassroots Democrats have urged Trump’s impeachment, and one Republican, Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, previously backed the president’s ousting via the 25th Amendment.
“Not only has the President abdicated his duty to protect the American people and the people’s home, but he has invoked and inflamed passions that have only fueled the insurgency we have seen here,” Kinzinger said in a tweeted video release. “The president is unfit and the president is not well and the president must now relinquish control of the executive voluntarily or involuntarily.”
The 25th Amendment provides for the dismissal of the president if the vice president and a majority of the cabinet determine that he or she is “incapable of discharging the powers and duties” of the office. If the president disputes the conclusion and the vice president and cabinet persist, Congress can order the president’s impeachment by a two-thirds vote in both houses.
The outcry stemmed from yesterday’s violence when a crowd of Trump supporters crossed police lines and invaded the Capitol, disrupting a joint session of Congress called to officially count the electoral college votes for the November presidential election. . Trump has vowed an orderly transition of power but refused to acknowledge his electoral loss to Biden.
It is not yet clear whether a significant number of Republicans would follow such a call, although some have explicitly accused Trump of putting his supporters into a frenzy and said he was responsible for yesterday’s events.
Impeachment and impeachment would require a simple majority in the House, but two-thirds of the Senate.
Only one Republican, Mitt Romney, voted to condemn Trump after his impeachment last year. Condemning Trump would require many more Republicans to vote for it.
In addition to removing him from office, Congress has the power to prevent him from running again.