Donald Trump’s Cabinet Considered Invoking 25th Amendment to Remove Him, Anonymous Staffer Writes in Op-Ed

A Trump administration senior official in a rare anonymous op-ed The New York Times published on Wednesday afternoon stated that early in President Donald Trump's tenure, there were “whispers” within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which addresses succession if the president vacates office.

"Given the instability many witnessed, there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which would start a complex process for removing the president,” stated the op-ed, titled, “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration.”

“But no one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis,” the author continued. “So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until—one way or another—it's over.”

Section 1 of the 25th Amendment states: “In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President.”

Section 4 of the amendment details how senior officials within the administration can invoke it. “Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office,” the section reads, “The Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.”

The op-ed author provides various scenarios suggesting, as Trump's critics have, that he may be mentally unfit to be president.

“Meetings with him veer off topic and off the rails, he engages in repetitive rants, and his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back,” the staffer wrote.

The staffer also quoted a top official complaining recently: “There is literally no telling whether he might change his mind from one minute to the next.” Some aides, the writer added, “have gone to great lengths to keep bad decisions contained to the West Wing, though they are clearly not always successful.”

Donald Trump 25th Amendment
Then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during a debate at Hofstra University on September 26, 2016, in Hempstead, New York. Win McNamee/Getty Images

It is unclear who the author of the op-ed is.

“I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations,” the author wrote.

The Times noted that it knew the identity of the senior Trump administration official but that his or her job would be jeopardized if revealed.

“There is a quiet resistance within the administration of people choosing to put country first,” the staffer concludes.