OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
House Republicans on Monday blocked a resolution calling on Vice President Mike Pence and Cabinet members to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove President Donald Trump from office.
The measure, which failed to receive unanimous consent, is House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s ultimatum before she brings up articles to impeach the president, following last week’s violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. Members of both parties have said the president incited the riot.
Pelosi has said she would bring the resolution to the House floor for a vote on Tuesday if it failed to get unanimous support Monday.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 11, 2021
Pelosi said in a scathing letter to colleagues on Sunday that the House “will proceed” with bringing legislation to the floor to impeach President Donald Trump.
She said the House will act with solemnity but also urgency with just days remaining before Trump is to leave office on January 20.
“In protecting our Constitution and our Democracy, we will act with urgency, because this President represents an imminent threat to both,” she said. “The horror of the ongoing assault on our democracy perpetrated by this President is intensified and so is the immediate need for action.”
She called on Vice President Mike Pence to convene and mobilize the Cabinet to activate the 25th Amendment and declare Trump incapable of executing the duties of his office.
“After which the Vice President would immediately exercise powers as Acting President,” she said.
She told her caucus, now scattered across the country on a two-week recess, to “be prepared to return to Washington this week” but did not say outright that there would be a vote on impeachment.
“If we do not receive Unanimous Consent, this legislation is planned to be brought up on the Floor the following day. We are calling on the Vice President to respond within 24 hours,” she wrote.
Alaska Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski said in an interview: “I want him to resign. I want him out. He has caused enough damage.”
Vermont Republican Gov. Phil Scott tweeted: “Make no mistake, the President of the United States is responsible for this event. President Trump has orchestrated a campaign to cause an insurrection that overturns the results of a free, fair, and legal election. There is no doubt that the President’s delusion, fabrication, self-interest, and ego have led us – step by step – to this very low, and very dangerous, a moment in American history. Enough is enough. President Trump should resign or be removed from office by his Cabinet, or by the Congress.”
Maryland GOP Gov. Larry Hogan also called for Trump’s removal or resignation.
“I think there’s no question that America would be better off if the president would resign or be removed from office and if Mike Pence, the vice president of the United States, would conduct a peaceful transition of power over the next 13 days until President [Joe] Biden is sworn in,” he said.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, meanwhile, said that “people should pursue whatever they believe will make it possible — through the most expeditious way possible — for the president to step down and for the vice president to assume the powers of the office for the next 14 days so that an orderly transition can take place.”
“I think it’s important at this point that there be an orderly transition and that that transition is led by the vice president,” Baker added.