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house Bill H. Res. 21

Should the House Call For VP Pence & the Cabinet to Invoke the 25th Amendment, Strip President Trump’s Authority?

Argument in favor

The House should call for Vice President Mike Pence and the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to deem President Donald Trump “unable to discharge the duties and powers of his office” and have Pence serve as acting president until Inauguration Day.

Joan's Opinion
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01/12/2021
Invoke the 25th Amendment and the 14th Amendment for the seditious trumplicans in Congress!
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Bijan's Opinion
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01/13/2021
I am an independent, neither a Democrat nor a Republican. Trump must be impeached. We need to understand that this impeachment is less about Trump, whoes attempted violent take over of our government failed, and more about a future dictator who wants to try the same. By not impeaching Trump we basically say it is OK if a President trys to ignore the votes and stay in power using violence as long as it is in his last week of holding office. If we don't impeach Trump we make such attacks on our democracy normal and OK.
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Rachel's Opinion
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01/13/2021
Trump should be held accountable for the divisive language he used to encourage the violent and DEADLY attack on the Capitol. It put YOUR life at risk and has caused the US to both appear AND actually be weak.
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Argument opposed

The House has no constitutional role in the invocation of the 25th Amendment, so debating and voting on this non-binding resolution amounts to an empty political gesture and waste of legislative effort that could go to more helpful pursuits.

truthNlogic's Opinion
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01/13/2021
So, Nancy Pelosi calls for another overreach of power by having a show vote of a non-binding resolution to tell the vice president to invoke an amendment which was intended to apply in a medical emergency because she didn't like a president utilizing his right of free speech. Too bad Nancy can't be impeached. She is the only one abusing her office. Trump's comments may have been ill advised and may have fanned the flames of anger, but they did not call for an act of violence nor anything approaching insurrection. The irrational left and their demagoguery of Trump are the only issues here. Maybe deal with real problems for once instead of your irrational insecurities.
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Joseph's Opinion
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01/13/2021
Trump should NOT be impeached. He did not incite by words or deeds.
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William's Opinion
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01/13/2021
Just another ridiculous, pointless witch hunt against our President that is a complete WASTE of our tax dollars and time. We need to be focusing on matters that are important like Covid vaccines distribution, more stimulus pay for people who really need it and are desperate for it. We need to be focusing on tying down big tech and put laws and regulations in to start holding them accountable. Big tech is not the arbiters of truth and should NEVER have the power that they have right now. VP Pench already made the right decision and declined to invoke the 25th amendment. The impeachment is also ridiculous. They KNOW they don't have the support to actually impeach him nor do they even have a legitimate reason to do so in the first place. But of course, it's Democrats being Democrats. Wasting time on pointless ventures and wasting our tax dollars and most of all further dividing our country.
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What is House Bill H. Res. 21?

This resolution would call on Vice President Mike Pence to mobilize the Cabinet for the purpose of invoking the 25th Amendment to deem President Donald Trump “unable to discharge the duties and powers of his office” and remove his powers, in which case Pence would serve as acting president. Section 4 of the 25th Amendment allows a majority of the Cabinet to vote to deem the president as incapable of performing their duties with the concurrence of the vice president, who would become the acting president.

The resolution contends that President Donald Trump’s words and actions incited the “dangerous insurrectionary mob” of his supporters who stormed the Capitol and interrupted the certification of the Electoral College results.

As a simple resolution, this legislation would not advance beyond the House if passed and is non-binding.

Impact

The Cabinet; Vice President Mike Pence; and President Donald Trump.

Cost of House Bill H. Res. 21

As a non-binding resolution, this legislation would have no cost.

More Information

In-DepthRep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) tweeted that the House will vote on his resolution to call on Vice President Mike Pence “to mobilize the Cabinet to state the obvious — President Trump is unable to successfully discharge the duties of his office — and to immediately transfer powers to the VP under section 4 of the 25th Amendment.”

House Rules Committee Ranking Member Tom Cole (R-OK) said that Democrats are “asking the House to assume a power it does not have, not even through a non-binding resolution, and we should not pretend otherwise.” He added in his opening statement at the Rules Committee hearing:

“There is no one joining this meeting today who condones the violent and destructive actions of the mob that stormed the Capitol last week, sought to harm innocent lives and disrupt democracy at work. Indeed, it never should have happened, and I cannot condemn the lawless perpetrators of the crimes strongly enough. And I know that we are all committed to ensuring justice is served to the fullest extent of the law. However, I believe the resolution before the committee today will not achieve the desired result.”

Democrats attempted to pass this legislation by unanimous consent on January 11, 2021, but Republicans blocked that effort with the objection of Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV), who released a statement that the House “must never adopt a resolution that demands the removal of a duly elected president, without any hearings, debate or recorded votes.”

After the unanimous consent effort failed, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said that the House will take up the bill under regular order and accused House Republicans of “enabling the President’s unhinged, unstable and deranged acts of sedition to continue.”


Of NoteThe 25th Amendment was ratified in 1967 in the wake of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination to address issues related to presidential capacity and the ability of the vice president to permanently or temporarily assume their duties. Momentum for the 25th Amendment began during the prior decade when President Dwight Eisenhower was hospitalized on three occasions, after which he worked out a public arrangement for Vice President Richard Nixon to assume his duties in the event of his incapacitation during the rest of his term.

Section 1 of the amendment clarifies that the vice president becomes president (not acting president) following the death, resignation, or removal of the president; Section 2 enables the president to fill a vice presidential vacancy by an appointment subject to confirmation by both chambers of Congress; Section 3 establishes a procedure for the president to voluntarily declare themselves “unable to discharge the powers and duties” of their office; while Section 4 provides a process for cases in which the president is unwilling or unable to declare a disability that would be implemented by the vice president and either a majority of the Cabinet, or a majority of “such other body” Congress may establish by law.

Given that Section 4 deals with problematic situations where the president can’t or won’t declare their disability (such as during intermittent consciousness), the procedures are more complex. After the vice president and Cabinet (or the other body) inform Congress of the president’s incapacity, the vice president immediately becomes acting president. 

Thereafter, if the president informs Congress in writing that no inability exists, they resume their duties unless the vice president and Cabinet (or the other body) declare the president unable to discharge their duties within four days, in which case the issue goes to the legislative branch. Congress would be required to convene within 48 hours for the purpose of assessing the president’s capacity even if it isn’t in session at the time.

Both the House and Senate would be required to vote on whether the president is unable to discharge their duties within 21 days of either the receipt of the president’s letter or Congress reconvening, with two-thirds majorities in both chambers required to declare the president unable to discharge their duties. If the vote succeeds, the vice president continues to serve as acting president, and if it falls short of the two-thirds threshold the president resumes their duties.

The 25th Amendment has been invoked six times since its ratification, three of which were related to vacancies in the office of the president and vice president during the administration of President Richard Nixon. 

Its first use occurred in 1973 when Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned and Nixon appointed Gerald Ford to replace Agnew. It came into play twice in 1974: after Nixon’s resignation and Ford’s elevation to president, then for Ford’s nomination of Nelson Rockefeller to fill the vice presidential vacancy. 

The three most recent invocations of the 25th Amendment resulted in the vice president becoming the acting president while the sitting president underwent medical procedures requiring anesthesia.

President Ronald Reagan transferred power to Vice President George H.W. Bush in 1986 while he underwent a colonoscopy, but did so while taking steps to avoid creating a binding precedent for his successors.

President George W. Bush underwent a colonoscopy in 2002 and transferred power to Vice President Dick Cheney for two hours, and did so again for another colonoscopy in 2007.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: The White House via Flickr / Public Domain)

AKA

Calling on Vice President Michael R. Pence to convene and mobilize the principal officers of the executive departments of the Cabinet to activate section 4 of the 25th Amendment to declare President Donald J. Trump incapable of executing the duties of his

Official Title

Calling on Vice President Michael R. Pence to convene and mobilize the principal officers of the executive departments of the Cabinet to activate section 4 of the 25th Amendment to declare President Donald J. Trump incapable of executing the duties of his office and to immediately exercise powers as acting President.

simple resolution Progress


  • The house Passed January 13th, 2021
    Roll Call Vote 223 Yea / 205 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on the Judiciary
    IntroducedJanuary 11th, 2021

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    Invoke the 25th Amendment and the 14th Amendment for the seditious trumplicans in Congress!
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    So, Nancy Pelosi calls for another overreach of power by having a show vote of a non-binding resolution to tell the vice president to invoke an amendment which was intended to apply in a medical emergency because she didn't like a president utilizing his right of free speech. Too bad Nancy can't be impeached. She is the only one abusing her office. Trump's comments may have been ill advised and may have fanned the flames of anger, but they did not call for an act of violence nor anything approaching insurrection. The irrational left and their demagoguery of Trump are the only issues here. Maybe deal with real problems for once instead of your irrational insecurities.
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    Pence has written a letter saying he doesn’t agree with using the 25th so that option is closed leaving impeachment. The article of impeachment calls out insurrection and rebellion creating a plan B should the senate not vote for removal that allows Trump to be prosecuted for Insurrection and rebellion under the 14th. Either impeachment or the 14th will prevent Trump from holding office. The 14th is easier than impeachment as it only takes a majority not a super majority (2/3rds) and wouldn’t take up Senate time for a trial. It does however involve the courts after Congress votes for it. Four Republicans (Katko, Cheney, Kinzinger, Upton) currently support impeachment, and McConnell is considering support as he does not see it as partisan and wants to see the evidence. It is hard to understand why Pence won’t invoke the 25th which the House passed today (1-12-21) when he had to be evacuated with his wife, daughter and brother because mobs wanted to hang him and Trump didn’t care enough about his well being to even check on his safety. https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/533957-pence-rejects-calls-to-invoke-25th-amendment https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/12/opinion/Trump-impeachment-disqualification.html https://www.nytimes.com/article/republicans-impeaching-donald-trump.html https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-didnt-check-pence-safety-after-inciting-capitol-mob-2021-1 https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2021/01/11/14th-amendment-trump-insurrection-impeachment/
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    I am an independent, neither a Democrat nor a Republican. Trump must be impeached. We need to understand that this impeachment is less about Trump, whoes attempted violent take over of our government failed, and more about a future dictator who wants to try the same. By not impeaching Trump we basically say it is OK if a President trys to ignore the votes and stay in power using violence as long as it is in his last week of holding office. If we don't impeach Trump we make such attacks on our democracy normal and OK.
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    Trump should NOT be impeached. He did not incite by words or deeds.
    Like (33)
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    Trump should be held accountable for the divisive language he used to encourage the violent and DEADLY attack on the Capitol. It put YOUR life at risk and has caused the US to both appear AND actually be weak.
    Like (26)
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    Whatever it takes to get that toad out of office
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    Since the MAGA rabble was chanting "Hang Pence" and was looking for Nancy Pelosi and there was a gallows AND a guillotine built on the grounds......I can't believe VP Pence did NOT do this post haste.
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    All gop that propagate, amplify, perpetuate Dumbkopf’s lies must be tried and punished for breaking their oath of office. Of the 72 mil who voted for dumbkopf only a very few are the absolute lunatic fringe. Most of the others are just dumb enough to be gullible to a con After all the turmoil there has been not a single shred of evidence to the contrary.
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    Donald Trump incited a violent riot to overthrow the election and the entire democracy of the United States. He is unfit and dangerous. Any legislators who aid and abet this insurrection will be held accountable when
    Like (21)
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    But he won’t do it
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    Y E S Pence SHOULD apply the 25th Amendment. The House SHOULD Impeach Trump. The Senate SHOULD Remove Trump. The White House Administrative Staff SHOULD & MUST resist all illegal orders. The White House Facilities Staff SHOULD be packing for his quick removal. Too many SHOULDS! How about a spontaneous Trip? Mongolia? Siberia? The Bermuda Triangle? "Jam Him Up!"
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    Just another ridiculous, pointless witch hunt against our President that is a complete WASTE of our tax dollars and time. We need to be focusing on matters that are important like Covid vaccines distribution, more stimulus pay for people who really need it and are desperate for it. We need to be focusing on tying down big tech and put laws and regulations in to start holding them accountable. Big tech is not the arbiters of truth and should NEVER have the power that they have right now. VP Pench already made the right decision and declined to invoke the 25th amendment. The impeachment is also ridiculous. They KNOW they don't have the support to actually impeach him nor do they even have a legitimate reason to do so in the first place. But of course, it's Democrats being Democrats. Wasting time on pointless ventures and wasting our tax dollars and most of all further dividing our country.
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    The only reason I can see that you would do this would be out of I miss guided believe that you have some kind of moral superiority. You don’t
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    Yes. The 25th amendment should be invoked.
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    Pence won’t. The cabinet members that are left won’t. It doesn’t matter what we think. Impeach him Congress!
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    It is also extremely important that trump ability to pardon is totally stifled!
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    Donald Trump is too dangerous in office, no matter how many platforms he's banned from. We've seen his rabid fanbase willing to do anything to keep him in power, including violating our Constitution and sacking our Capitol. He must be removed now to keep him from spouting more lies and inciting more violence, and hopefully he can be sent far away where we'll never hear from him again. Remove him immediately.
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    I absolutely agree. What happened on 1/6/21 was deplorable and a disgrace to our country. Not only should Trump be removed immediately, the Senate should call for the immediate resignation of Josh Hawley who was outside with his fist in the air egging on the violent insurrectionists. Also, Ted Cruz should resign for going along with Trumps meritless and baseless claims of fraud. Moreover, anyone else who had been an enameled should be immediately removed from office and not allowed to hold a public office on the federal level.
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    It’s a waste of time to try and and get these co- conspirators to do the right thing. They should all be impeached!
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