Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer called for the invocation of the 25th Amendment to remove President Donald Trump from office following a violent protest at the U.S. Capitol.
“What happened at the U.S. Capitol yesterday was an insurrection against the United States, incited by the president," Schumer said. "This president should not hold office one day longer."
A mob of supporters of the president stormed the Capitol grounds and inside the chambers of Congress, delaying the certification of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris's 2020 victory.
Several Democrats and at least one Republican congressman have called on the 25th Amendment to be used to remove Trump from power for the next two weeks until Biden is sworn-in. The mechanism would require either a majority of the president's cabinet and Vice President Mike Pence to act or a special body appointed by Congress.
Schumer, who is set to become majority leader when Harris becomes vice president, added Congress should consider impeachment and removal of the president. Congress has gaveled out of session until later this month.
“The quickest and most effective way - it can be done today - to remove this president from office would be for the Vice President to immediately invoke the 25th Amendment. If the Vice President and the Cabinet refuse to stand up, Congress should reconvene to impeach the president," Schumer said.
In a press briefing Thursday afternoon, Schumer said he and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tried to call the vice president Thursday morning to tell him to invoke the 25th Amendment.
"They kept us on hold for 25 minutes and then said the vice president wouldn't come on the phone," Schumer said. "So we are making this call public, because he should do it and do it right away."
Schumer said people cannot simply "shrug their shoulders" at the incident at the Capitol.
"We cannot treat our democracy like this is something out of our control," he said. "If we just shrug our shoulders about violence and mayhem, if we shrug our shoulders about dangerous conspiracies and misinformation, another president - or even this president, if he tried again - could do the same."