The day after the attack on the U.S. Capitol building, calls to remove President Donald Trump from the White House grew— including from two North Jersey congressmen.
Sen. Cory Booker and Rep. Donald Payne signaled that will support the leaders of their respective houses in attempting to have President Trump removed from office before his term ends Jan. 20 for what Gov. Phil Murphy labeled “an act of domestic terrorism spurred on by the President himself and his minions.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced they are exploring options for the removal of the President, including having Vice President Mike Pence invoking the 25th Amendment.
“What happened at the U.S. Capitol yesterday was an insurrection against the United States, incited by President Trump. This president must not hold office one day longer,” said Sen. Schumer. “The quickest and most effective way—it can be done today—is to remove this President from office would be for the Vice President to immediately invoke the 25th amendment. If the Vice President and the Cabinet refuse to stand up, Congress must reconvene to impeach President Trump.”
The 25th Amendment would involve the majority of President Trump’s cabinet and Vice President Pence wresting the power of the presidency because in their judgement the President was unable to do his job.
Speaker Pelosi later revealed the two leaders tried to call Vice President Pence directly on but were left on a holding line for 20 minutes without an answer. No members of the President’s cabinet or other prominent Republicans have backed the calls for his removal.
“While it’s only 13 days left, any day can be a horror show for America,” she said.
Chao Steps Down
Inside the White House, the fallout continued as Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao—wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell—became the first cabinet official to resign from the Trump Administration. Others that have resigned following the mob overrunning the U.S. Capitol include Mick Mulvaney, the president’s former acting chief of staff, as special envoy to Northern Ireland, deputy national security adviser Matthew Pottinger, and acting chairman of the White House Council of Economic Adviser Tyler Goodspeed among others.
Rep. Payne joined over 100 members of the House who have called for a resolution to impeach President Trump for his actions to undermine American democracy.
Payne Back Impeachment
“We have never had a president who cared less about the American people,” said Payne in a press release Jan. 7. “Since the November election, he has shown that his ego and personal profiteering are far more important than his job to protect the country and defend the Constitution.”
“I thought we might be able to survive his reckless and criminal behavior until the Jan. 20 inauguration of (President-elect) Joe Biden as our 46th President. But his actions in Georgia and his support for rioters and terrorists during the siege of our Capitol Building, a symbol of democracy worldwide, shows he should be removed from office immediately.”
The resolution to attempt to impeach President Trump for a second time would be categorized for high crimes and misdemeanors based on conduct that violates his duty to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. The two articles mentioned in the resolution relate to Trump’s phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his actions to incite mob violence to stop the certification of the Electoral College vote.
Meanwhile, Sen. Booker tweeted support of the notion to remove Trump. New Jersey’s junior senator wrote “Donald Trump has shown he is a direct threat to the safety and security of Americans and the integrity of our democracy. The Vice President & Cabinet should immediately invoke the 25th Amendment to remove the President from office. Trump incited a violent insurrection against our own government. Congress should be prepared to impeach & remove the President if the Vice President and Cabinet fail to adhere to their constitutional duty. We must protect our national security.”
Calling those that overran U.S. Capitol Guards “an unhinged mob,” Murphy stated the ability for members of Congress to complete the certification of the Electoral College showed that democracy is stronger than the pro-Trump supporters who roamed the halls on Jan. 6.
National Guard Sent to DC
“The scene that unfolded yesterday in the Capitol Building will go down as one of the darkest days in our nation’s history,” said Murphy on Jan. 7 as he announced the state’s National Guard would be sent to Washington, D.C, until after President-elect Biden is sworn in.
The first-term democratic governor remarked every effort should be made to bring those to justice who caused the mayhem as Congress was in session.
“Every insurrectionist who tried to overthrow the free and fair election of President-elect Biden should be identified, arrested, and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law for desecrating the cradle of American democracy,” said Murphy. “They should be given no quarter…they are not patriots.”
“Four Years of Gaslighting”
The governor characterized the mob as being the antithesis of what it means to be an American, a build up in his opinion of the actions and words of President Trump during his term in office
“The President’s refusal to accept the reality that he lost an election created this. His years of lies and willful misinformation created this,” said Murphy. “His belief that the laws don’t apply to him created this. His spewing of unfounded conspiracy theories created this. His unwillingness to understand even the basic precepts of the Constitution created this.”
The governor continued, “Make no mistake, yesterday was no accident. It was the result of four years of gaslighting and concerted attempts from within to weaken our democracy. But our democracy proved more resilient than the deranged conspiracy theories.”