Without a shred of irony, liberal professors, college administrators, and the liberal media have avoided the nagging question of the 2020 presidential election: Could Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden be replaced by his vice president through the 25-th Amendment of the Constitution?
During the presidency of Donald Trump, multiple professors blasted Trump and claimed that he was mentally unstable and unfit for the presidency.
One outspoken professor, Dr. Bandy Lee, met with Democratic Party lawmakers and one Republican senator for two days in Washington, D.C. to discuss Trump’s alleged mental health decline. Lee works as a psychiatry professor at Yale University and edited the book, “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,” which included testimonials from mental health experts and psychiatrists. In the December 2017 meetings, Lee predicted that Trump is “going to unravel.”
Despite Biden’s multiple on-camera gaffes on the campaign trail, Lee has not changed her opinion about Trump’s mental fitness when compared to Biden. She told Yahoo News, “A few stumbled words are not the same as the extreme danger that result from a list of signs that Donald Trump has shown and none of them apply to Joe Biden.” Lee said that Biden mixing up stories and bungling campaign appearances were not “catastrophically alarming” when compared to Trump.
Another law professor, Eric Posner, echoed similarly-flawed claims about the 25th Amendment and Trump’s mental health. In an opinion editorial in the Washington Post, University of Chicago law professor Posner claimed that Trump “exposed a defect in our constitutional system” because it did not account for a president that “has lost the confidence of the public because of a failure of temperament, ideology, or ability.” Posner proposed the creation of a council to evaluate a president’s mental health and whose members would be a bipartisan body of politicians, which could only remove the president by a two-thirds majority vote.
To this day, Posner has not addressed the potential for Biden to be removed from the presidency by the Constitution.
Former Harvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz countered the liberal academics’ views about Trump’s mental fitness, “The 25th Amendment would require, for mental incapacity, a major psychotic break.” He added, “This is hope over reality. If we don’t like someone’s politics we rail against him, we campaign against him, we don’t use the psychiatric system against him. That’s just dangerous.”
Also, Michigan State University law professor Brian Kalt wrote in The Atlantic in December 2019 that 25th Amendment proponents misunderstood the provisions in the constitutional amendment. His article debunked the narrative that Trump could be easily removed from power by invoking the constitutional amendment.
Kalt noted that the much-cited Section 4 of the amendment would not be a “swift” result because of time allowances. For example, the president could invoke Section 3, which says that the president is “unable” to perform his constitutional duties and transfers power to the vice president. If the president did not invoke Section 3, and both the vice president and cabinet vote to transfer power to the vice president, then the president has four days to declare that “no inability exists.” After that, the vice president and cabinet must vote again, and then it goes to Congress. Two-third majorities in the House of Representatives and the Senate have to agree in twenty-one days or the president regains his power. According to Kalt, the president could continue to try to regain his stripped powers since Section 4 is not a permanent solution, unlike impeachment. In the end, the transfer of power under the 25th amendment would span at least twenty-four days and would not be as swift as college professors and the media led the public to believe.