Reflecting on recent events, the New York Times'
David Brooks' latest column
noted, "I still have trouble seeing how the Trump administration survives a full term. Judging by his Thursday press conference, President Trump's mental state is like a train that long ago left freewheeling and iconoclastic, has raced through indulgent, chaotic and unnerving, and is now careening past unhinged, unmoored and unglued."
This is not an uncommon sentiment. During Donald Trump's press conference yesterday, a variety of reporters in the room were overheard whispering among each other about the "insane
" nature of president's performance. There was a similar reaction on Capitol Hill: NBC News' Kasie Hunt said lawmakers from both parties watched the event with their "jaws on the floor
Earlier in the week, the Washington Post
's E.J. Dionne Jr. asked
a question many have pondered, but few have spoken aloud: "What is this democratic nation to do when the man serving as president of the United States plainly has no business being president of the United States?" His colleague, Dana Milbank, recently conceded
, "My worry is the president of the United States is barking mad."
Ordinarily, conversations along these lines lead to questions about possible impeachment proceedings and congressional options for removing a president from office. But if my email inbox is any indication, there's growing interest in the options available through the 25th Amendment -- which has a Wikipedia page that's apparently being referenced more and more
all the time.
In fact, The Atlantic
's David Frum joked
after the election, "Twenty-Fifth Amendment to the Constitution. Article 4. We're all going to be talking a lot more about it in the months ahead."
So, what's Article 4 to the 25th Amendment? In the abstract, the amendment itself is about presidential succession, and includes language about the power of the office when a president is incapacitated. But Digby recently highlighted
the specific text of growing relevance: