Thursday, January 7th, 2021

US cabinet members discussing Trump’s removal

Published 4:42 pm | January 07, 2021

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Online desk ; Members of President Donald Trump’s cabinet on Wednesday (Bangladesh time Thursday) discussed the possibility of removing Trump from office after his supporters stormed the Capitol, reports Reuters quoting three US news channels.
The discussions focused on the 25th amendment to the US Constitution, which allows for a president’s removal by the vice president and cabinet if he is judged “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”

Invoking it would require Vice President Michael Pence to lead the cabinet in a vote on removing him.

The reports came after the head of a major US business group that represents 14,000 companies including Exxon Mobil Corp, Pfizer Inc. and Toyota Motor Corp. urged senior US officials to consider removing Trump from office.

CNN quoted unnamed Republican leaders saying the 25th amendment had been discussed, saying they had described Trump as “out of control.”

Trump has 14 days remaining in office before President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in on Jan. 20.

The mayhem at the Capitol forced Congress to temporarily postpone a session to certify Biden’s victory.

The chaotic scenes unfolded after Trump, who before the election refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he lost, addressed thousands of supporters near the White House, repeating unfounded claims that the election was stolen from him due to widespread fraud and irregularities.

CBS reporter Margaret Brennan said that “nothing formal” had been presented to Pence, and ABC reporter Katherine Faulders said “multiple” sources had told her that discussions took place on the unprecedented move.

Trump’s encouragement of the protesters, his unfounded claims that he lost the November 3 presidential election due to massive fraud, and other bizarre behavior have raised questions about his ability to lead.

While only two weeks remain before President-elect Joe Biden takes office, after the attacks on Congress Thursday Democratic lawmakers called for invoking the 25th Amendment as well.

Democrats of the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Pence urging him to act to remove Trump, saying he had stoked an act of insurrection and “sought to undermine our democracy.”

Pointing to a rambling speech Trump gave Wednesday, it said he “revealed that he is not mentally sound and is still unable to process and accept the results of the 2020 election.”

Others blamed Trump for fueling terrorism. “The President incited a domestic terror attack on the Capitol. He is an imminent threat to our democracy and he needs to be removed from office immediately,” said Representative Kathleen Rice in a tweet.

“The Cabinet must invoke the 25th Amendment,” she wrote. The lawmakers’ call was echoed by the influential Washington Post.

“Responsibility for this act of sedition lies squarely with the president, who has shown that his continued tenure in office poses a grave threat to US democracy. He should be removed,” the Post said.

“The president is unfit to remain in office for the next 14 days. Every second he retains the vast powers of the presidency is a threat to public order and national security,” they said.

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