What is the 25th Amendment? Pelosi questions Trump’s health


House Speaker Pelosi has raised the prospect of the 25th Amendment, which allows the president’s Cabinet members to remove him from office.

WASHINGTON — If the president is unable to serve because of illness or death, the 25th Amendment makes clear the powers of the presidency transfer to the vice president.

The 25th Amendment also lays out procedures for what happens if the president becomes unable to discharge his duties but doesn’t transfer power. The vice president and majority of the Cabinet can declare the president unfit. They’d then send a letter to the Speaker and President Pro Tempore saying so. The vice president then becomes acting president.

Now searches are up across the web for processes of the 25th Amendment because of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who on Friday introduced legislation related to President Donald Trump’s fitness to serve.

Pelosi introduces the ‘Commission on Presidential Capacity to Discharge the Powers and Duties of Office Act’

Pelosi is questioning Trump’s fitness to serve, announcing legislation Thursday that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis. She noted Trump’s “strange tweet” halting talks on a new coronavirus aid package — he subsequently tried to reverse course — and said Americans need to know when, exactly, he first contracted COVID as others in the White House became infected. On Friday, she plans to roll out the legislation that would launch the commission for review. Read more here.

This is a live stream of those remarks Friday:

Read the 25th Amendment:

via the Interactive Constitution

Presidential Disability and Succession

Passed by Congress July 6, 1965. Ratified February 10, 1967. The 25th Amendment changed a portion of Article II, Section 1

In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President.

Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.

Whenever the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President.

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.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days 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. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

What does this mean? Read multiple interpretations here

Multiple editors at TEGNA contributed to this report

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