WASHINGTON — More than a dozen Democrats representatives and at least one Republican representative are publicly calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, and remove President Donald Trump from office just weeks before his term ends. A second Republican representative has said he would not oppose it, if it was invoked.
“It’s with a heavy heart I am calling for the sake of our Democracy that the 25th Amendment be invoked,” said Republican Representative Adam Kinzinger on Twitter. “It’s time to invoke the 25th Amendment and to end this nightmare.”
It’s with a heavy heart I am calling for the sake of our Democracy that the 25th Amendment be invoked. My statement: pic.twitter.com/yVyQrYcjuD— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) January 7, 2021
Later Thursday, Republican Representative Steve Stivers said "if the cabinet decided to do that, I would not oppose it," referring to the 25th Amendment.
Kinzinger and Stivers' video statements come hours after a formal letter, signed by 17 Democratic Representatives on the House Judiciary Committee, was sent to Pence late Wednesday night.
"It is with great sadness that we write to you following the incidents that unfolded at the U.S. Capitol today. As you presided over the U.S. Senate, angry supporters of President Trump attempted an insurrection, illegally storming and breaching the U.S. Capitol building to stop the certification of President-elect Biden's victory," reads the statement.
The lawmakers’ statement says “President Trump remained silent” as “the world watched aghast as insurrectionists, who had been egged on by the President, threatened the safety of elected officials and staff and destroyed public property as they stormed” the U.S. Capitol Wednesday afternoon.
They point outthat the president “revealed he is not mentally sound and is still unable to process and accept the results of the 2020 election.”
In order to invoke the25th Amendment, a majority of the 15 Cabinet Secretaries and the Vice President would need to agree and send formal documents to Congress for consideration and approval.
The amendment reads, “Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.”
A large number of Republicans would also have to agree in order to approve the request once it is sent to Congress. It is not clear if that is likely to happen.
“For the sake of our democracy, we emphatically urge you to invoke the 25th Amendment and begin the process of removing President Trump from power. President Trump has shown time and again that he is unwilling to protect our Democracy and carry out the duties of the office,” the lawmakers end their letter.
NEW: I am sending a letter with @RepTedLieu and our colleagues on the House Judiciary Committee, calling on Vice President Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Donald Trump from office after today’s events. pic.twitter.com/5VK8DLTLn4— David Cicilline (@davidcicilline) January 7, 2021
The formal letters and calls from lawmakers joins others who have expressed similar calls to invoke the 25th Amendment, and echo sentiments shared Thursday by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senator Chuck Schumer.
The National Association of Manufacturers released a statement Wednesday afternoon calling on Pence and others to consider the 25th Amendment.
"The outgoing president incited violence in an attempt to retain power, and any elected leader defending him is violating their oath to the Constitution and rejecting democracy in favor of anarchy. Anyone indulging conspiracy theories to raise campaign dollars is complicit. Vice President Pence, who was evacuated from the Capitol, should seriously consider working with the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to preserve democracy,"their statement reads.
The statement is notable, as the National Association of Manufacturers recognized Ivanka Trump last year with an industry award.