Stop Unconstitutional 25th Amendment Modification

Democrats in Congress are seeking to pass an unnecessary, partisan, and unconstitutional bill that would create a commission with the power to unseat the president of the United States if it deems him incompetent.

On October 8, 2020, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.; 18% Freedom Index score) announced and endorsed H.R. 8548, titled the “Commission on Presidential Capacity to Discharge the Powers and Duties of the Office Act.” This bill, sponsored by Representative Jamie Raskin (D-Md.; 17% Freedom Index score), has thirty-eight cosponsors. According to Congressman Raskin’s press release, the bill would create a seventeen-member commission composed of four physicians, four psychiatrists, eight former executive branch officials, and one chair who must be a physician. This commission would have the authority to examine the president – including, but not limited to, upon demand by Congress – and if it finds him incompetent to serve, the vice president would become president.

Pelosi hinted at the bill one day earlier, after much media and leftist discussion about potentially removing President Trump via the Twenty-Fifth Amendment because of his brief infection with the coronavirus. However, Pelosi later denied that the bill was about Trump, despite the fact that Raskin introduced a similar bill in 2017 explicitly because of Trump. President Trump, meanwhile, argued that the bill would make it easier for Democrats to replace a potential President Joe Biden with Kamala Harris.

Regardless of the intent of H.R. 8548, it violates the constitution. For example, according to the bill, none of the seventeen members of the commission require Senate confirmation. Rather, they are merely appointed by certain officers of Congress. In other words, the commission that could single-handedly remove the U.S. president from office would have almost no accountability or examination.

This setup blatantly violates the Appointments Clause, which requires Senate confirmation for U.S. Officers. And while the importance of such a commission precludes its members from being considered “inferior officers,” that section of the clause also prevents unilateral appointments by Congress.

H.R. 8548’s treatment of the vice president also violates the Constitution, specifically the Twenty-Fifth Amendment. In his press release, Raskin implies that “the concurrence of the Vice President” is needed for the commission to remove the president. However, Section 6 of the bill itself only requires the commission’s “consultation” with the vice president when transmitting its report, and it only requires the report to note any disagreement by the vice president of its findings. Nowhere does the bill actually say that the vice president can block the president’s removal, despite the 25th Amendment’s explicit requirement in Article 4 that the vice president must concur.

In its reporting on H.R. 8548, the mainstream media repeatedly labeled Congressman Raskin a “constitutional scholar” and a “constitutional lawyer.” However, having written this blatantly unconstitutional bill – and with a cumulative Freedom Index score of 17% – he shows himself to be unworthy of such an honorable title.

In addition to its constitutional failings, H.R. 8548 is both unnecessary and bad policy that would strengthen the Deep State and hasten the replacement of our constitutional republic with a technocracy.

In his press release, Congressman Raskin falsely implies that Congress never properly implemented the 25th Amendment. However, Section 4 clearly states that the vice president, plus a majority of the cabinet, can remove the president from office. Considering that these officials work most closely with the president and require vetting by the Senate, they are in a much better position to understand the president’s mental condition than some doctors and former politicians who may have never met the president.

Additionally, such an unelected commission would weaponize the 25th Amendment, making it a tool to threaten, or remove, presidents because of policy disagreements. As an October 9, 2020, Wall Street Journal editorial noted:

“[T]he Pelosi proposal would make the 25th Amendment a weapon for political scheming and abuse.… When opposing parties control Congress and the White House, there would be pressure for members to abuse medical judgment for partisan ends.”

While the bill requires eight committee members to be equally divided between former Republican and Democrat officials of certain executive branch positions, Donald Trump’s election and presidency have shown that the establishment of the president’s own party can strongly despise him and would eagerly join in the politicization of the removal process.

Additionally, requiring the majority of the committee to be physicians and psychiatrists would hasten the replacement of the U.S. constitutional republic with technocracy, the rule of “experts” and other members of the elite. Allowing a group of unaccountable and unelected doctors to have control over who leads the United States would hasten the trend toward global technocracy and the new world order.

Additionally, H.R. 8548’s criteria on what medical conditions may warrant the president’s removal are vague and would allow for a broad interpretation of what constitutes an incapacitating condition (pages 2-3). This is dangerous, considering how psychiatry has been weaponized to silence political opponents by labeling them “mentally ill,” as seen in history by countries like the USSR. Even today, what is considered a “mental illness” is being redefined, with “climate change denial” being labeled as such, and with mental illness being used to remove Americans’ Second Amendment rights. H.R. 8548 is yet another step toward this trend.

Please urge your U.S. representative and senators to oppose H.R. 8548, the “Commission on Presidential Capacity to Discharge the Powers and Duties of the Office Act.” Inform them that it is unconstitutional and strengthens the technocratic Deep State at the expense of our constitutional freedoms and form of government.

Thank you!

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