Considering President Biden’s countless verbal gaffes, inappropriate behaviors, and highly public displays of wandering forgetfulness, will Democrats remove the nearly 80-year-old from office via the 25th Amendment? Before Democrats raise their hands in unison, there is a 25th Amendment Catch 22 to consider. Before Kamala Harris can cackle into the Oval Office Capitol Hill Democrats and White House officials are barred from invoking the 25th Amendment.
The current 50/50 Senate Political Party Split Hogties Dems’ use of 25th Amendment
An analysis of the current Senate composition coupled with a reading of the 25th Amendment to the Constitution reveals that, as much as some may want to move Biden back to his Delaware basement, Democrats politically do not want to invoke the 25th Amendment to declare President Biden unfit.
Here’s the real deal.
Currently, political power in the Senate is evenly divided between the parties, 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans. Article One, Section Three of the United States Constitution provides that the vice president of the United States is the president of the Senate. So, despite not being a Senator, as the President of the Senate Kamala Harris may cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate if necessary.
So right now, her vote secures the slimmest majority necessary to secure Democrat control of Senate legislation.
Section 4 of the 25th Amendment to the Constitution provides that:
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 Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.
Fair enough. If Kamala Harris and the requisite gang of executive department heads send Patrick Leahy (the current President pro tempore of the Senate) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi a written declaration that Joe Biden is unfit, according to Section 4 of the 25th Amendment, Kamala Harris immediately assumes the office of Acting President.
So, when the Vice President becomes the Acting President, how is a new Vice President installed?
Section 2 of the 25th Amendment supplies the answer:
Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress. (U. S. Constitution, Amendment 25, emphasis added)
Those Founding Fathers really thought through how to balance power.
The Political Power Play
Confirmation of a new Vice President requires a “majority” of both Houses. Speaker Pelosi will guarantee a slim majority of votes in the House, but hold up. If Harris is sitting pretty in the Oval Office, the Democrats don’t have Harris there to break the tie in the evenly divided Senate to confirm her replacement.
And they really, really need a new loyal Democrat Vice President to cast such tie-breaking votes.
Without Harris in place, assuming no GOP defections, the Senate is at a deadlock. Democrats cannot win votes on legislation in the Senate; they cannot confirm nominations, and they cannot amend Senate Rules to their advantage. Such as eliminating the filibuster. Simply put, the Democrats need Kamala to stay right where she is no matter what. And that means Joe Biden is irreplaceable.
GOP House Members play Hard Ball and Demand Cognitive Test
It seems that certain GOP House members are ready to launch the medical nuclear option. The cognitive test. U.S. Rep. Ronny Jackson, R-Texas, who served as White House physician under former presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Trump is ready to send Biden packing.
He sent Biden a letter on June 17th to insist that the president take a cognitive test and release the results to the public. In 2018, Jackson gave Trump a clean bill of health following an annual physical and cognitive test. The precedent is in place.
The public would support a movement to force Biden to take a cognitive test.
In fact, in a YouGov America national survey conducted during the 2020 presidential campaign, “67% or about two-thirds of Americans support the notion that candidates be required to take a cognitive test.”
Furthermore, a strong majority of Democrats (71%), Republicans (71%), and Independents (68%) like the idea of cognitive testing for candidates.
This support crosses all age groups: 68% of Americans over 55and 64% of 18- to 24-year-olds support the idea of cognitive testing for candidates. While a majority support the idea that presidential candidates take cognitive exams, only 14 percent oppose the idea.
Even if the White House balks on the cognitive test, at least some in the GOP are starting to step up their game to play real political hardball for once.
And if through an act of God, President Biden passes and Harris must assume the presidency, a united GOP could shut down Democrat power by blocking confirmation of a new Vice President until after the midterms in 2022. Consider this: If the GOP gains just a few seats in the House and even one Senate seat in the midterms, Republicans win back control of congress. Then all bets are off. The GOP could leverage their united power to block Harris’ nomination of a replacement VP. This would keep the Senate split 50/50 with no tie-breaking vote. A true deadlock.
If Joe is shown the door via the 25th Amendment what could be worse than Harris?
So, expect Joe Biden’s handlers to take very, very good care of old Joe. Nothing short of his actual death will cause Democrats to replace Biden with Harris. Because, in doing so, they risk losing control in the executive and legislative branches of government.
What could be possibly worse?
“President” Nancy Pelosi, the former Speaker of the House. Here’s how that could play out — and yes, it’s a big stretch depending on many “what ifs.”
By law, Pelosi is second in line to succeed the President, after the Vice President. Conceivably, if Biden were removed, Harris elevated to Acting President, and a deadlocked Senate did not confirm a new Vice President, then, in the very unlikely event Kamala met with tragedy or was also deemed unfit, Speaker Pelosi would be next in line as President, leaving a vacancy in the Speaker of the House.
The 25th Amendment does make the Speaker a part of the process of announcing presidential disability.
So Nancy may gather loyalists to lie in wait if Kamala stumbles out of the block to invoke the 25th Amendment against Kamala. Pelosi is the second in line to the presidency. But this Game of Thrones version is not likely. Nancy, like Kamala, must secure Democrat power herself by remaining where she is.
If Nancy were to vacate the Speakership in favor of the Presidency, then with a little bit of political arm twisting, the GOP might actually have a shot at nominating a new Speaker elected by a majority of the House changing the balance of power.
That’s something Democrats cannot allow.
Suffice to say the Democrats’ precarious balance of power in the Senate, and possibly in the House, depends on Joe Biden’s questionable cognitive powers and continued good health.
The Joe Biden ‘gaffes, stumbles and confusion just continue’
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About the authors:
Kevin Fobbs began writing professionally in 1975. He has been published in the “New York Times,” and has written for the “Detroit News,” “Michigan Chronicle,” “GOPUSA,” “Soul Source” and “Writers Digest” magazines. In addition to the Ann Arbor and Cleveland “Examiner,” “Free Patriot,” “Conservatives4 Palin” and “Positively Republican.” The former daily host of The Kevin Fobbs Show on conservative News Talk WDTK – 1400 AM in Detroit, he is also a published author. His Christian children’s book, “Is There a Lion in My Kitchen,” hit bookstores in 2014.
California PolitiChick Susan Swift Arnall is a lawyer, wife, and conservative mother of seven children. Since her impassioned call into Rush Limbaugh’s radio program in 2009, Susan has given political commentary on radio and blogs and was invited in 2010 by Andrew Breitbart to write for his young website Big Journalism. She has written over 60 published articles for Breitbart.