Former Maine Sen. Bill Cohen and U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree of the 1st District said Wednesday that President Donald Trump’s Cabinet should use the 25th Amendment to remove him from office after a mob supportive of the president overran the U.S. Capitol.
One woman was fatally shot during the riots, which interrupted congressional sessions to certify the Electoral College results. Trump, who has refused to accept the results of the election and encouraged supporters to come to the nation’s capital on Wednesday, alternatively praised the rioters and asked them to go home on social media as chaos erupted in Washington and members of Congress hid for safety.
Speaking on CNBC, Cohen, a former Republican senator who served as defense secretary in Democratic President Bill Clinton’s Cabinet, said Trump had “encouraged” the rioters and was “responsible” for their actions.
“I don’t know where his Cabinet has been all this time, but it’s long overdue for the 25th Amendment because this man is no longer capable of serving the United States of America,” Cohen told the network.
Pingree, a Democrat, tweeted late Wednesday that she would support impeaching and removing Trump in his last two weeks in office before President-elect Joe Biden takes over on Jan. 20 and would support the Cabinet using the 25th Amendment to remove him, saying he “lit the match that started an attempted coup in the Capitol.”
Under the 25th Amendment, the vice president and members of the president’s cabinet have the power to remove the president from office if they are deemed unable to carry out the duties of the office. The amendment has been invoked several times before, but never without the consent of the president.
Cohen’s statement came after the National Association of Manufacturers, an advocacy group that was instrumental in the passage of Trump and fellow Republicans’ 2017 tax-cut law, also said Vice President Mike Pence should consider invoking the 25th Amendment to remove the president, saying Trump “incited violence in an attempt to retain power.”