Pelosi and Schumer call for Trump’s immediate removal from office

Pelosi and Schumer call for Trump's immediate removal from office

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Thursday called for Vice President Mike Pence and members of President Trump’s Cabinet to remove him from office via the 25th Amendment.

Driving the news: Pelosi accused Trump of committing “seditious acts” and said keeping him in office for the next 13 days would be “very dangerous.” She emphasized that the “overwhelming sentiment” of her caucus is to impeach Trump if Pence or the Cabinet do not act.

Why it matters: It’s a forceful demand by Democratic leadership, underscoring the severity of the situation after the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Some confidants and Republican officials have privately considered invoking the 25th Amendment, which has long been dismissed as a liberal fantasy.

  • Schumer said that if the Cabinet does not exercise the 25th Amendment, Congress should reconvene to impeach and remove Trump. Pelosi said the House may consider that option. No president has ever been impeached twice.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), a frequent critic of the president, became the first Republican in Congress to call for the 25th Amendment to be invoked on Thursday.

Where it stands: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) shared a screenshot of articles of impeachment that she said had “already been drafted” by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and “are ready for introduction.” More “members are signing on,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

What they’re saying: “What happened at the U.S. Capitol yesterday was an insurrection against the United States, incited by the president. This president should not hold office one day longer,” Schumer said in a statement.

  • “The quickest and most effective way — it can be done today — to remove this president from office would be for the Vice President to immediately invoke the 25th amendment. If the Vice President and the Cabinet refuse to stand up, Congress should reconvene to impeach the president,” he said.
  • Pelosi denounced Trump supporters that breached the Capitol on Thursday as “terrorists.”

Of note: Congress is out of session until Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.

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