On Wednesday, after riots broke out at the U.S. Capitol, Democrats pressured members of President Donald Trump’s cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and remove him from office in order to avoid an escalation of violence.
Speaking with MSNBC anchor Nicolle Wallace, Swan said that top Cabinet members have not embraced the idea of invoking the 25th Amendment, “but what has happened instead is kind of a de facto 25th amendment.”
“They are operating as if he is not the president, many of these senior officials, ignoring him and staying away from the West Wing, staying away from him, hoping that he doesn’t call. “
Swan explained that officials are “just continuing to run their agencies” while ignoring Trump. Many of them, he said, have vowed to defy the commander-in-chief if he issues an “any orders that they deem dangerous or unlawful.”
This situation, Swan said added, “raises really uncomfortable questions about the chain of command and where we’re at right now with the government.”
On Thursday, Swan reported in a piece for Axios that Cabinet members now believe Trump is “unfit and unhinged” and many of them are simply avoiding Trump and “hoping to white-knuckle their way to Jan. 20 without having to engage much with him.”
The report also said that many individuals close to Trump believe that invoking the constitutional mechanism would be divisive and bad for the country.
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Deputy National Security adviser Matt Pottinger have already resigned from their posts, citing Wednesday’s riots as the main reason.
However, Senate Republicans have allegedly pleaded with White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien to stay in their jobs for the sake of national security.
Although many Democrats have argued that Trump should be removed from office as soon as possible, President-elect Joe Biden suggested on Friday that he would rather not go down that road.
At a press conference in Wilmington Delaware, Biden said that he would have advocated for Trump’s impeachment and removal six months ago, but argued that he would now rather focus on moving forward with the transition process and implementing his agenda.
Trump finally conceded defeat in the 2020 presidential election on Thursday, but less than 24 hours later said that he will not be attending Biden’s inauguration. Vice President Mike Pence will reportedly be in attendance.