In the aftermath of the U.S. Capitol riots, countless politicians from both sides and millions of Americans are urging Congress to invoke the 25th Amendment, thus removing President Donald Trump from office — but a new report states that Vice President Mike Pence, a key player in the process, is against doing so.
On January 7, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer released a joint statement about the ongoing situation.
"We have not yet heard back from the Vice President," they revealed.
The 25th Amendment states that the current president can be removed if the vice president and a majority of the cabinet members agree he is no longer fit to serve his position. If successful, the VP would fill his spot.
The only other way to pull Trump from office would be through a second impeachment — though it's unlikely to occur, as the process wouldn't be able to be finalized before Joe Biden is sworn into office on January 20.
"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," Schumer explained on January 7. "If the Vice President and the cabinet refuse to stand up, Congress should reconvene to impeach the president."
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Though Pence has long backed Trump, reports surfaced that he hit his breaking point as the January 6 riots commenced, as many believe Trump spurred the hysteria.
"Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify," Trump tweeted as chaos in D.C. ensued. "USA demands the truth!"
Since then, several White House staffers have quit, and Pence and Trump have remained divided. Senator Jim Inhofe claimed he had "never seen Pence as angry as he was" as the violent scene at the Capitol unfolded. Still, it may not be enough for Pence to make the move.
Trump eventually tried to save face by condemning the rioters, declaring that those involved "do not represent our country" and will be held responsible. He also admitted defeat in the 2020 election, though he noted he will not be attending Biden's inauguration on January 20.