A New Yorker write-up envisions the ways the Trump presidency could come to an end before 2020.
“How Could Trump Get Fired?” examines two ways to end an American presidency in the May issue — impeachment and the 25th Amendment.
“During the past few months, I interviewed several dozen people about the prospects of cutting short Trump’s presidency,” Evan Osnos writes. “I spoke to his friends and advisers; to lawmakers and attorneys who have conducted impeachments; to physicians and historians; and to current members of the Senate, the House, and the intelligence services.”
He admits that ending a presidency before the four years is unlikely, but justifies the speculation by claiming “nothing about Trump is normal.”
“By any normal accounting, the chance of a Presidency ending ahead of schedule is remote,” he writes. “In two hundred and twenty-eight years, only one President has resigned; two have been impeached, though neither was ultimately removed from office; eight have died. But nothing about Trump is normal. Although some of my sources maintained that laws and politics protect the President to a degree that his critics underestimate, others argued that he has already set in motion a process of his undoing. All agree that Trump is unlike his predecessors in ways that intensify his political, legal, and personal risks.”
Trump could lose his presidency through Section 4 of the 25th Amendment, which allows a president to be forced from office if he is deemed “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office,” Osnos speculates. “More than fifty thousand mental-health professionals have signed a petition stating that Trump is ‘too seriously mentally ill to perform the duties of president and should be remove’ under the Twenty-fifth Amendment,” he adds.
Osnos cites numerous psychologists and professors to hypothesize whether Trump suffers from a mental health issues and could therefore be booted from office.
“Like many of his colleagues, Dodes [a clinical professor] speculates that Trump fits the description of someone with malignant narcissism, which is characterized by grandiosity, a need for admiration, sadism, and a tendency toward unrealistic fantasies,” Osnos notes, adding that the professor believes Trump’s temper could start a war.
The piece then turns to look at how Trump could be impeached, claiming it is a “more promising tool for curtailing a defective Presidency.” Trump’s unpopularity could help the process of impeachment, Osnos writes. “Were Trump to face impeachment, his lawyers would likely try to present him as a victim of a partisan feud, but his unpopularity would be a liability; Republicans in Congress would have little reason to defend him,” he writes.
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