House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday she spoke to Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, about preventing President Donald Trump from accessing the nuclear codes amid reports that Trump has been in a diminished mental state since his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.
In a letter to her Democratic colleagues, Pelosi said she asked Milley about the “available precautions” for preventing a president from stoking military conflicts or accessing the nuclear launch codes and “ordering a nuclear strike.”
Pelosi summed up her goal as “preventing an unhinged president from using the nuclear codes.”
“The situation of this unhinged President could not be more dangerous,” Pelosi said in the letter, vowing to “do everything that we can to protect the American people from his unbalanced assault on our country and our democracy.”
The letter comes amid reports that Trump has been unstable since the attack, with the New York Times’ Maggie Haberman quoting an anonymous senior adviser who says Trump has “lost it,” and CNN’s Jim Acosta citing a source close to Trump who said he is “out of his mind.”
Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), in a statement announcing her support for Trump’s removal through the 25th amendment, said she has heard from a number of senior Trump administration officials that the president is “increasingly unhinged.”
Forbes has reached out to the White House for comment.
Pelosi said in her letter she continues to work towards Trump’s removal from office and that there is “growing momentum” behind removing him through the 25th Amendment, which would require Vice President Pence and a majority of the Cabinet to decide he is not in a fit state to govern. However, Pelosi said she and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called Pence about this effort but were unable to reach him. Pence reportedly opposes invoking the 25th Amendment.
12. That’s how many days Trump has left in office, but Democratic leaders worry that still leaves Trump plenty of time to do damage. “Any day can be a horror show for America,” Pelosi said at a press conference on Wednesday, while Schumer said Trump “should not hold office one day longer.”
“Tempers must be cooled and calm restored,” Trump said in a video posted to Twitter on Thursday in a clear effort to tamp down efforts to remove him. “A new administration will be inaugurated on Jan. 20. My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power.”
Trump said Friday he does not plan to attend President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, the first time in 152 years a president has done so.