Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The 25th Amendment Fantasy

The basic mechanics of how the spreading Russophobia works is most Democrats, like many of the women that I work with, are so eager to see Trump toppled that they are willing to repeat the anti-Russia slurs they pick up from CNN and MSNBC.

With the Comey memo, we seem to be approaching escape velocity. A few more bombshells back to back and I don't see how Trump avoids a breakdown from sheer exhaustion. Then Ross Douthat's floater on the 25th Amendment starts sounding feasible. Trump will be in Mar-a-Lago recovering and a majority of his cabinet will inform Congress that he is unfit to serve. Pence becomes president.

The problem with this scenario is that the 25th Amendment allows the unfit president to declare his fitness to Congress and resume his duties. The cabinet and vice-president (now acting president) can dispute the president's declaration of fitness. Then the whole mess is tossed into the House and Senate for a vote. It's a high bar, akin to impeachment, for a president's removal. Two-thirds of both the House and Senate need to declare the president unfit for the vice-president to continue to serve as acting president.

This is too messy and pyrotechnic for the deep state. Unless Trump can be made to accept extended sabbatical, the 25th Amendment soft-coup route is pure fantasy.

Trump is being tattooed with leaks and is being drummed to putty by the mainstream media, but he doesn't strike me as someone who would accept a declaration of unfitness.

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