Mike Pence ‘wants to preserve the option’ of invoking the 25th amendment

Congress Meets to Certify Electoral College Vote at the U.S. Capitol

As we learn more about what actually went down during the Capitol siege on the 6th, it becomes even more clear that we’re beyond lucky that there wasn’t more bloodshed and more of a horror show. Five people died in the domestic terrorist attack, including one Capitol Police officer who was reportedly beaten to death by terrorists armed with, like, fire extinguishers. Many of the terrorists were armed, they had bombs and Molotov cocktails. There was a photo of one terrorist carrying zip-tie handcuffs, and there’s much anecdotal evidence that the plan was to take hostages. Many terrorists said before and during the siege that they planned to kill Nancy Pelosi, Mike Pence and other congressmen and senators. It’s also clear that the terrorists were aided by Donald Trump and high-up officials at the Pentagon, plus senior officials within the Capitol Police. It would not surprise me if there were congressmen and senators in the Wingnut Contingent who aided the terrorist attack as well. It was truly an attempted coup d’etat.

So with all of that, you would think that at the very least, there was a consensus that Donald Trump needs to go. But since this is the worst timeline, always, senior Republicans are still playing games with armed sedition and cop-killing. Lindsay Graham said last week that sure, the terrorist attack was bad and Trump is responsible for it, but Trump should get one freebie and if he does it again, then he’ll face some consequences. That has become the talking point among that crowd now. It’s beyond infuriating. Even Mike Pence apparently believes that, and Trump literally sent terrorists to the Capitol to murder him.

Vice President Mike Pence has not ruled out an effort to invoke the 25th Amendment and wants to preserve the option in case President Donald Trump becomes more unstable, a source close to the vice president says. The source said there is some concern inside Pence’s team that there are risks to invoking the 25th Amendment or even to an impeachment process, as Trump could take some sort of rash action putting the nation at risk.

As of Saturday evening, Trump and Pence still have not spoken since the Wednesday incursion at the US Capitol that left five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer, another source told CNN. The President has also not made any public comments denouncing death threats that have been posted on social media targeting Pence.

Pence has finally “gotten a glimpse of POTUS’s vindictiveness,” one source said, using the acronym for President of the United States. Two sources familiar with the matter say Trump is angry at Pence and Pence is disappointed and saddened by Trump. Trump put Pence in an impossible position, asking him to overturn the election results during Wednesday’s joint session of Congress. When Pence explained that he could not do that and sent a letter to members of Congress that he would follow the Constitution, Trump used his Wednesday rally to egg on the crowd, telling them to march on Capitol Hill, and said of his vice president, “Mike Pence, I hope you’re gonna stand up for the good of our Constitution and for the good of our country, and if you’re not, I’m going to be very disappointed in you, I will tell you right now. I’m not hearing good stories.”

As CNN previously reported, aides to the vice president were outraged that Trump did not check in on Pence on Wednesday as he and his family were fleeing from the mob storming the Capitol.

For now, the source close to the vice president said Pence and his advisers hope to provide a bridge to the next administration and do as much as possible to assist President-elect Joe Biden’s team in preparing for dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. But, the source cautioned, it has become clear this week that it is necessary to keep the 25th Amendment option on the table based on Trump’s actions. Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said during a news conference earlier this week that he and Pelosi tried to call Pence to invoke the amendment to oust Trump from office, but they were put on hold for 25 minutes and then were told he would not come to the phone.

[From CNN]

I’ve seen some of Constitutional Law Twitter talking about how Pence and the Joint Chiefs are likely organizing a “soft 25th,” meaning they’re taking away Trump’s power and authority quietly, without having to invoke the 25th and without Trump even realizing it. Speaker Pelosi has also said and indicated that she’s been in direct contact with Cabinet officials and the Joint Chiefs and expressed her completely justified fear that Trump will try to incite another coup, and they need to step up and do more. So, with all that being said… I am not wholly dismissive of Pence’s concerns, that if he begins to make some big move on the 25th Amendment, Trump will go berserk. God, the next week and a half is going to be shambolic.

President Trump delivers remarks on the stock market in Washington, DC

President Trump meets with the Coronavirus Task Foce and Pharmaceutical executives in Washingotn

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.

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52 Responses to “Mike Pence ‘wants to preserve the option’ of invoking the 25th amendment”

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  1. Rapunzel says:

    The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in line to the Presidency were at serious risk. 2 and 3 would probably have died if the mob had not been stopped. This was intentionally provoked by Trump to maintain power. The goal was likely Pence dies, it’s blamed on antifa, and Trump enacts martial law, and declares the election invalid.
    He cannot get away with this.

    • Persephone says:

      I’m wondering why more people can’t see this.

    • Seraphina says:

      Let’s not forget he pardoned Flynn who stated martial law should be in place and we then have a do over on the election. They want conspiracy theories but don’t question the obvious: TRUMP WAS SETTING THIS UP A WHILE BACK. Take a look at what his buddy Putin and Ergodan have done.

    • Esmom says:

      It absolutely was. Someone on Twitter who studies hate groups and has infiltrated their message boards, had screen grabs outlining this exact scenario. Lots of cryptic language, too, as they tried to be somewhat coded in their messaging but even a clueless layperson like me got the gist.

      What’s so crazy/fascinating to me is how they would analyze every word of Trump’s tweets for secret messages. It explains Trump’s panic at losing his account. Sure he has other ways to communicate with the public but he clearly is more interested in a very specific audience.

      • Mumzy says:

        @Esmom—you are absolutely correct. These domestic terrorists are parsing every word that Trump (and his family, and allies) communicates. He can (and will) do a LOT more damage, but even shutting off some of his social media platforms cannot stomp out the fuse he lit last week, because it’s not actually about him; He has just been the fuel and flame.

        We (the collective we) have underestimated the true threat of radicalized domestic terrorists. We don’t know how many there are, in part because they have different end-goals—their own definition of patriotism, be it white control, male control, religious control, etc… It has been easy to dismiss various groups because on their own, they didn’t pose enough of an immediate threat, but Trump has fueled their groups’ hatred, and pulled them together with the common excuse of his own “patriotic” war. And while their collective efforts currently carry the Trump brand, because he and they have different ultimate end-goals, he will not be able to control them, only fuel them. They are violent, organized (enough), well armed, ready to attack, and if needed, die for their causes. These people are seeded *all* over this country, and some work in the organizations that we rely upon to protect society from this very kind of threat — government, military, and law enforcement. We’ve been so focused on defense against violence from foreign radicals that we’ve missed the danger of the radicals living beside us.

        I highly recommend yesterday’s WaPo piece about some amazing people who are volunteer cyber stalkers to track and identify radicals and then alert authorities with actionable information. You may have seen this too. https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/antifa-far-right-doxing-identities/2021/01/10/41721de0-4dd7-11eb-bda4-615aaefd0555_story.html )

        Many authorities (and the general public) were warned about what was coming, and nothing was done. We’re being warned that the 17th is the day planned for statehouse invasions, and also Inauguration Day for a similar, but larger run of the Capitol attack. (I’m particularly worried about the state houses, which have fewer resources for protection.)

        **Oh, interesting…I just read that over 70TB of data has been captured from Parler servers. At least one militia group (“North Central Florida Patriots”) has told their members and is warning about the potential of now being held “accountable.” https://mobile.twitter.com/donk_enby/status/1348484125825658887

      • Esmom says:

        Mumzy, Thanks for your insights and your link to the WaPo article. I saw it in passing yesterday and never got back to it.

        Wedneday’s insurrection did actually bring home for me how many different factions are using Trump and vice versa. The different groups were pretty easy to discern, watching everything unfold in real time. It felt different from a typical MAGA rally as the militia types were much more visible.

        I also think that’s why some of the sad sack Trump supporters who are in my FB feed genuinely thought they might be Antifa, because they “look” different from the average Joe who supports Trump basically only out of some vague, misguided notion that he’s a smart, rich businessman and that Democrats are evil socialists. For example, they kept saying the Qanon Shaman guy “couldn’t have been MAGA” because of his appearance, because they’re not in as deep into the white supremacist movement and didn’t know he’s been a fixture on a scene they barely understand. They are naive, have been naive all along. Trump took advantage and then everyone else jumped on board. It has gotten way out of control and yet that fact did nothing to deter Trump and his family from continuing to fuel that fire for their own ends.

        I really do feel like our country is circling the drain.

      • KPS says:

        Let’s get over calling these PoS “domestic terrorists” – they are TERRORISTS. Call them what they are. A woman who has been raped has not been “sexually assaulted” – she has been RAPED.

    • Shoshone says:

      Yes. I have thought since before Christmas that Trump was plotting to declare martial law and suspend habeus corpus (sorry about my spelling) which means the suspension of our Constitutional rights. He would have used the Insurrection Act. We literally came within one minute of the mob overrunning the Senate and capturing Pence and many Senators and staff. At that moment Trump could have turned the USA into a police state. I think that there may have been people seeded across the government poised to help him seize dictatorial power.

      This is exactly what the Nazis did. They burned the Reichstag (equivalent today our Capital building) and framed a poor man and the communists for it and declared martial law.

      This plot may not be over. With the Inauguration approaching and Trump planning to do a big tour in the last 10 days we could (will) see civil unrest nationwide thus giving him another opening. They say to expect violence in most state capitals.

  2. Southern Fried says:

    Only thing I want to hear from Pence is that he’s hating Federal prison food. Spineless tw*t.

    • KhaoManee says:

      Me too. I mean his wife and daughter were there and could have been killed as well. What kind of person sides with the terrorists who tried to kill you and your family??? He is a spineless weasel.

      • Lucy says:

        This! They came for him, his wife and daughter! And he still is trying to golly gee wiz his way out of it. Trump’s already shot his shot, the only way he can incite more is if he gets on tv and says stuff that will get him dragged off. He’s not smart enough to do more than call people desperately. If Pence had a quarter of a sponge for a spine, this would be his big moment.

      • Becks1 says:

        I think that’s part of it though – and I’m sure it was part of the intent of the terrorists as well. Pence is in general a spineless wimp, so imagine how much more spineless and terrified he is after knowing how close his wife and daughter were to being hurt. Pence is probably terrified to do anything about Trump at this point – he was literally just doing what the constitution says he has to do, and Trump sent an armed mob after him. He’s probably scared shitless imagining who will come for him if he does anything to restrict Trump’s power (ie 25th).

        Now, for many people, that terror would manifest itself as a spine – as in, you would say “you think I’m scared of you? I’m not scared of you! you cant intimidate me!” But Pence is already spineless as said above so here we are.

        I can understand his fear for his daughter and wife, even at this point. But I dont understand being rule by that fear when he’s in a position to change it.

      • trashaddict says:

        Maybe Trump has dirt on Pence. That would make him the perfect VP. Threatening to spill the beans??? Anyway tiny violin for him.

  3. Sofia says:

    It’s now or never to invoke the 25th. Trump’s already unstable enough and incited a coup in which his supporters wanted to murder Pence. A “soft” 25th makes sense and like you, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was happening (I think Nancy even spoke to people about the nuclear codes situation)

    • Esmom says:

      Yeah, I don’t get the “if he gets even more unstable.” How much more unstable can a person be?

      Reading in depth about the GA runoffs, it was clear to me that all he could talk about, no matter what the topic these past couple months, is how the election was stolen from him. They honestly could not get him to focus on anything else for more than a couple minutes. He’s utterly, dangerously obsessed.

    • trashaddict says:

      As more and more cabinet members leave and as he’s not talking to Pence, who’d holding the reins in on Trump? That’s my big question. Will the people who are left be able to, or want to keep him from doing something stupid?

  4. Lily says:

    Hmmm, so, if someone in your family partially burned down your house, you SHOULDN’T call the police or seek accountability or restitution in any way because that might incite them to actually burn it to the ground next time, and it would also be bad for your family’s sense of unity. Got it.

    • Emily says:

      The Republican logic is so flawed. If that person isn’t arrested, they’re more likely to come back and finish the job.

      If a robber knows my door is unlocked, why would they only steal from me once?

  5. Alexandria says:

    I’m surprised Pence doesn’t want to be President Pence during this interim by invoking it.

    Stay safe all.

  6. Lightpurple says:

    Pence doesn’t have the Cabinet support. DeVos and Chao bailed instead of doing their jobs. The acting members, which is a sizable percentage at this point, have no vote. Pompeo is standing with Trump, as is Wilbur Ross. Mnuchin might be in favor. Carson is asleep. Who knows what the remaining white guys would do.

    • heygingersnaps says:

      Carson isn’t asleep he’s been going on about how there should be peace and reconciliation during this time, he’s siding with 45.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      I agree – he isn’t invoking it because he won’t get the support from the rest of the cabinet, Looks like impeachment is the only option.

      I think Pence knows that the rest of the Cabinet were likely in on it. The whole world knows Dump was directly involved and it’s been planned since he lost.

      They will attempt this again and Pence might not be so lucky as he now has a target on his back. He is seen as a traitor to Dear Leader.

  7. Rapunzel says:

    Can we stop saying Pence would be President if he invoked the 25th? That’s not what would happen. He’d be “acting President” like when a president undergoes surgery and leaves the VP in charge. Trump would not be removed from the Presidency via 25th. Just taken out of power. He could conceivably be stripped after a Congressional trial. But there’s not enough time for that.

  8. Esme says:

    Ok, invoking the 25th will give the Trumpers the narrative of “Trump was ousted by the Deep State!1!1!!” or whatever, but they don’t need a narrative at this point, the twitter ban will do. Trump should be removed from power, in public. If he then incites more violence, the national guard/army should make ready to prevent and respond to that violence and defend their democracy.
    Launch codes are a strawman, I think, there can be no justified use for them and the military can object or refuse to carry out Trump’s deranged eventual nuclear orders.

    • Esmom says:

      I was with you for a long time on “they don’t need another narrative,” but the I have come to realize there will always be a narrative, and there will never not be violence planned. I think at the very least this needs to be invoked for the historical record and to just get him out of the picture so he can’t go spouting off more dangerous, unhinged sh^t. Just letting the POTUS finish out his term after what he incited just can’t be allowed to happen. Right now he is still a clear and present danger to us all.

    • Sarah says:

      You know…sitting in the country between the US and Russia, I’m not comfortable with relying on a couple of white military men doing the right thing because an order to use nuclear weapons isn’t “justified” as this has failed at every single turn so far. See also: everyone on here since the election saying a coup wouldn’t happen because it isn’t legal. Y’all…*gestures broadly at everything*

  9. Seraphina says:

    Trump needs his name to be forever associated as a Benedict Arnold. Pence is his handmaiden. Who knows what dirt they have on one another. Lord help us all. He keeps waiting on the 25th and time is running out. Personally, I want him impeached. Congress needs to do it and show that our other two branches of government stood strong to a madman dictator wanna be.

  10. B n A fn says:

    Mike Pence, grow a spine and get him out TODAY.

    • HoofRat says:

      Maybe we should be asking Mike Pence’s fly instead. He seems to be on top of things, and he’s used to dealing with sh*t. He’s almost certainly got more moral fortitude than his plastic-man perch.

  11. Golly Gee says:

    I read an article that said Trump knows Pence couldn’t do anything to stop Biden being signed in as president. In private he says he knows Pence got a “bad deal”. But he won’t admit it publicly. Knowing this, he continues to risk Pence ‘s life and use him as scapegoat to inflame his followers.

    • B n A fn says:

      Was that the reason he wanted him killed. His goons were roaming the halls looking for Mike Pence. They wanted him killed. Don’t believe anything coming out of 45 pie hole or anyone in the White House. They are all murderers and liars.

      • Golly Gee says:

        Yes. My point wasn’t clear. He incited his followers to get him despite knowing that there was nothing Pence could do, and he’s still not calling them off. Before reading the article, it was unclear to me if he was just delusional and actually thought Pence could do something, in which case his actions would’ve been based on revenge. But no, what he did to Pence he did fully knowing,, coldly and calculatingly.
        From 60 minutes: “We are told the President himself has privately acknowledged that Mister Pence got a bad deal, but he has not publicly condemned those who stormed the Capitol chanting “Hang Mike Pence.”
        And from 60 Minutes correspondent John Dickerson:
        “The President said he (Pence) could stop the count in Congress. He knew that to be a lie. When Mike Pence didn’t do that because he couldn’t it, the President said he lacked courage. He put a target on the back of his vice president. And what happened? As sure as night follows day, those– those rioters said hang Mike Pence. Hang Mike Pence. What gave them the idea that Mike Pence had done anything worthy of a hanging? Well, the President of the United States told them that,”

  12. Merricat says:

    The GOP is toast if they don’t separate from him and get him out. This mess is at their feet, and Democrats will campaign on it for the next 50 years. It’s scary watching Republican karma play out, but about damn time.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      The party is going to split – I’m reading that there is a lot of talk that if Dump starts his own party, the ‘Patriot’ party that potentially over half of current GOP senators will jump ship. Dump has put the lunatics in charge of the asylum.

  13. heygingersnaps says:

    “in case Trump becomes more unstable” – sounds like the description of someone who should absolutely *not* be the president of the USA! The last thing we need is an enraged narcissistic psychopath causing even more havoc in the last 10 days of his failed presidency!

  14. Coco says:

    Preserve the option? Until when, Cinco de Mayo?

  15. Laurelita42 says:

    My younger sister works for a senior senator in Washington D.C… this was her first week at work. I was getting text updates as the situation was unfolding, and it was horrible. I cannot believe our country, I am so ashamed and angry.

    • trashaddict says:

      Laurelita42 I hope she gets to see our government operating as a democracy again, and gets to enjoy Washington – I grew up there. I hope she will come through the next month safely and with happier stories to tell.

  16. readingissexy says:

    Honestly, the only “option” Pence wants to preserve right now is running for president in 4 years. He’s weighing what will garner him more future votes. It’s hard for me to imagine Pence as caring for the safety of the public AT ALL—-this is the same man that let the AIDS epidemic/HIV outbreak languish in his state during his governorship and killed thousands of people. This is the same man that has enabled Trump. Gross.

    • Shoshone says:

      Pence is politically done. He will never be a nominee for President. Trump’s “republican” base and donors will never support him. His political career is done and he cannot count on a cushy post administration job or a lucrative speaking tour. Trump threw Mike Pence’s entire future under the bus with his repeated lying, His career is in aches. I think that if he could invoke the 25th he would. The remaining cabinet is spineless and complicit.

  17. Tx_mom says:

    Well, this cheered me up a bit. A woke nerd crawled all of Parler before it was closed down and has 56 terabytes of everyone’s incriminating plans, videos, and it’s got all the metadata (like their GPS coordinates while posting). As she says, “this is the opposite of censorship.” Another favorite quote is her response to complaints: “a lot of things posted publicly on the internet somehow ended up on the internet and this person seems upset about it.”

    https://gizmodo.com/every-deleted-parler-post-many-with-users-location-dat-1846032466/amp?__twitter_impression=true

  18. SM says:

    I am no fan of a blank sheet of white paper Pence, but with all the complicit idiots enabling Trump and amplifying his lies, especially in Congress, I can understand how he may be not only scared of what Trump would do but what his criminal fanatical trug group will do to him or his family. They were chanting “hang Pence”, after all. Those idiots are about to realise what once dawned on all the complying functionaries in totalitarian regimes, by sustaining lie, sooner or later you become a hostage to the lie. I also saw footage of Trumpers verbally attacking Lindsey Graham, they engenired a situation where they themselves are in the impossible position now. As for Trump, it may be a good strategy to just take all the powers from him, as there is not much time left, but once January 20 comes, he needs to be tried for all the crimes he has done. I know it feels like ages from the Muller investigation, but even it sets a path for his trial and the number of crimes just piled up after that as we know.

  19. Sandra says:

    Mike! Trump sent terrorists to hang you in front of your wife and daughter. They literally built your gallows! Your daughter is now traumatized for life because she heard them chanting the call for her father’s death. But you’re taking a “wait and see” approach?

  20. Julia K says:

    Pence could be counting down the days like the rest of us, waiting to file charges against the man who sent a mob to kill him.

  21. KPS says:

    Pence “wants to preserve the option” to be a political commentator in the future (since he’ll have zero political career options after these 4 years). For a brief moment I thought Pence might have grown a pair, but nope. Pence is a coward, a traitor and a disgrace to the U.S. Democracy. You and Mother go back to the rocks you slithered out from under.

  22. Liz version 700 says:

    His wife and daughter were put in imminent danger and heard the cried chanting “hang Mike Pence.” The entire government was almost murdered. If not this what will it take for this man to be brave.

  23. J ferber says:

    Coward with no moral backbone.
    Trump sent a murderous mob after him and his family. Trump never checked on pence afterwards. Maybe he expected him to be hanging by the neck on a tree (as some mob members threatened). And THAT is the man not crazy enough to remove? For real?

  24. Dl says:

    Please correct me if I am wrong but after the presidency ends isn’t secret service just for the outgoing president? If so if I were Pence I would be terrified of some of these nuts coming after me later if the amendment is evoked. Just a thought. I would hope and pray something is happening behind the scenes. Pelosi is smart.

  25. Julia K says:

    You are correct. It also covers Barron until he is 16 and Melania as a former first lady.