By Dave Lindorff
Little noticed during yesterday’s bizarre storming of the Capitol building by armed and violent Trump-incited American “brownshirts,” was the fact that National Guard troops, called for by Washington’s mayor, but not authorized by President Trump, were finally authorized by Vice President Pence.
The significance of this chain of authority cannot be understated.
The control of the US military is one of the, if not the greatest power of a US president, who is also designated as the commander in chief of the US military in the US Constitution. The Vice President under the Constitution, only has two jobs: Taking over the role of president if the actual president is permanently or temporarily unable to perform that job; and serving as president of the Senate. (The significance of that latter function, normally ceremonial, will soon become far better understood as Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris, currently a senator from California, becomes Vice President Harris and starts providing the 51st Democratic vote in the Senate, handing Democrats control of that legislative body.)
While arguably, President Trump has been progressively losing his marbles as his presidency crumbles, most recently engaging in thug-like abuse of power and trying to pressure a Georgia secretary of state to help steal the election from American voters in that state, and inciting what some are calling an act of treasonous insurrection in the halls of Congress, no legal or political action has been taken to try and oust him from office. There are now calls from Democratic and Republican legislators as well as in the media and by many major leaders of US businesses including the Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the 14,000-company National Association of Manufacturers, for Pence and the White House cabinet to activate Article 25 for removal of the president, an impeachment resolution is being drawn up by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota), but to date no actual action has been taken on either of these measures. Legally then, President Trump, sane or mad, seditious and criminal or not, remains the President of the US until his term of office ends at noon on Jan. 20 when President-Elect Joe Biden takes the oath of office.
This means that Vice President Pence remains simply vice president, with no authority to order US troops to do anything, no ability to sign executive orders, no authority to sign Congressional bills into law. Nothing.
And yet, in a situation where the Capitol Police force and Washington DC’s police force were overwhelmed by a mob that stormed the Capitol building forcing the evacuation and lockdown of both houses of Congress, with members of both parties cowering in their offices or behind seats in the halls of their respective chambers as outnumbered police hunkered down with weapons drawn hoping to prevent mayhem, and in one case shooting and killing a female invader of the building, the vice president acted.
For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the uncompromised, collectively run, six-time Project Censored Award-winning online alternative news site, please go to: https://thiscantbehappening.net/has-trump-already-been-removed-as-commander-in-chief/