Video: Heidi Kitrosser, a visiting professor of constitutional law at Northwestern University, and Aziz Huq, professor of law at the University of Chicago, discuss how the 25th amendment works. (Produced by Quinn Myers)
U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a Republican representing Illinois’ 16th Congressional District, called Thursday morning for President Donald Trump to be removed immediately from office and replaced by Vice President Mike Pence.
In a two-minute video posted on Twitter, Kinzinger directly blamed Trump for inciting the rioters who stormed and invaded the U.S. Capitol building on Wednesday during a congressional count of electoral votes to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.
Kinzinger is the only Congressional Republican to call for the president’s removal as of Thursday morning.
Trump “abdicated his duty to protect the American people and the people’s house, he invoked and inflamed passions that only gave fuel to the insurrection,” Kinzinger said, adding that the president gave a “wink and a nod” to those responsible for the violence.
“All indications are that the president has become unmoored not just from his duty or even his oath but reality itself,” Kinzinger said. “It is for this reason I call for the vice president and members of the cabinet to ensure the next few weeks are safe for the American people and that we have a sane captain of the ship.”
It’s with a heavy heart I am calling for the sake of our Democracy that the 25th Amendment be invoked. My statement: pic.twitter.com/yVyQrYcjuD
— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) January 7, 2021
The 25th Amendment requires a majority vote by the cabinet to be invoked. If the president objects, Congress must decide whether to uphold the president’s removal from office.
“It is time to invoke the 25th Amendment and end this nightmare,” Kinzinger said. “We will arise from this, but we can not forget what led us here. The liars and conspiracy authors are already at it again this morning with false narratives about yesterday’s disaster. Here’s the truth: the president caused this. The president is unfit and the president is unwell. And the president must now relinquish control of the executive branch, either voluntarily or involuntarily.”
Since Election Day, Kinzinger stood nearly alone among Republican legislators in recognizing President-elect Joe Biden’s victory and pushing back against Trump’s baseless claims of mass voter fraud.
Elected to Congress in the Tea Party wave of 2010, Kinzinger is widely expected to run for statewide office in Illinois in 2022, either by challenging U.S. Sen Tammy Duckworth, a Democrat, or Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who is also a Democrat. His congressional district is likely to be reshaped during this year's planned redistricting.
Pritzker called for the president’s removal Wednesday night, calling Trump’s actions “high treason.”