Washington — Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday night that he will not invoke the 25th Amendment, just hours before the House was set to vote on a resolution formally calling on him to do so. In a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Pence said he does not “believe that such a course of action is in the best interest of our Nation or consistent with our Constitution.”
The House is currently weighing a resolution that would call on Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, which allows a majority of the Cabinet to remove the president from office. House Democrats have previously said they will move forward on Wednesday with a vote on impeaching President Trump if Pence declines.
Mr. Trump brushed aside calls for his removal over last week’s attack at the Capitol, saying the 25th Amendment is “of zero risk to me, but will come back to haunt Joe Biden.”
“Be careful what you wish for,” Mr. Trump said in Alamo, Texas,. He said the impeachment effort mounted by House Democrats is “dangerous for the USA, especially at this very tender time.”
The president’s remarks came hours after he declined to take any responsibility for the deadly assault on the Capitol that left five dead. Speaking to reporters before boarding Air Force One, Mr. Trump claimed his speech to supporters before they stormed the Capitol was “totally appropriate.”
Democrats have moved swiftly on efforts to remove Mr. Trump from office following the assault last week on the Capitol, arguing his repeated unfounded claims the election was stolen and heated rhetoric during a rally just before the attack incited the violence on January 6. Appearing at the rally near the White House, Mr. Trump urged supporters in attendance to “fight like hell.”
An article of impeachment introduced in the House on Monday and backed by more than 200 Democrats accuses Mr. Trump of “incitement of insurrection,” and says he “gravely endangered the security of the United States and its institutions of government.” Three House Republicans, including House GOP leadership member Liz Cheney, said they will vote to impeach the president.