2021-01-09 15:45:05 UTC
The news is full of possibilities for what to do about Trump while he
still has power - only 11 days left before inauguration of Biden. A
serious question should be asked, "To what end?"
Invocation of Amendment 25 of the Constitution to remove him from office
would eliminate the possibility of any overt act, but would have little
other effect than revenge. It is not an issue in any case because Pence
and the Cabinet would not do it. It is not a good idea IMV, even if
they were motivated to do it.
Impeachment could be done and Pelosi probably has the votes to do it,
but it is in effect only an act of revenge since the Senate is unlikely
to convict. It would send a strong message, but what would it
accomplish. I suspect that Trump would treat it as an accomplishment,
the only President to be impeached twice! It would only serve as an act
of revenge IMV with limited long term impact on his ability to act in
A third option may be a better way to punish Trump and serve to limit
his ability to influence politics in the future. This would be to
censure him under Amendment 14(3) of the US Constitution. Literally,
this is what it says:
"No Person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector
of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military,
under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously
taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United
States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or
judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United
States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the
same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may
by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability."
This would essentially bar him from not only aspiring to any public
office in the future, but it would minimize his influence on anyone
seeking his assistance in their own aspirations. It would essentially
minimize his influence over Republican primaries. This could be done
with a simple majority vote in both houses of Congress and that could be
done quickly. Furthermore, it would take a 2/3 vote of both houses to
reverse, exactly the opposite of other possible Congressional options.
This would have a deterrent effect that is more useful than other
possible efforts at revenge or punishment.
Seems like a good idea to me! Do it, have it done, and move on!