Speed Reads

History Lesson

Keith Olbermann offers a surprisingly easy and constitutional way to fire Donald Trump

Green Party nominee Jill Stein is trying to reverse the presidential election result through recounts in three Rust Belt states, and there's a push to have the Electoral College just pick Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump, despite Trump winning more electoral votes, but Keith Olbermann says there's an easier way to strip Trump of power: "The 25th Amendment, Section Four." The Constitution was surprisingly vague on what happens if a president dies or is incapacitated in office, he explained in his GQ show The Resistance, laying out the history of the amendment, enacted in 1967, and running down its three better-known clauses. "And then there is Section Four," Olbermann said, "written nearly 52 years ago, more with Woodrow Wilson in mind, and yet it might as well have been named for Donald John Trump."

This section allows for "instant impeachment," Olbermann said, with no hearings or doctors or trial. In about three weeks, with just two letters from the vice president and a majority of the Cabinet declaring the president unable to discharge his duties, a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate "results in the president remaining in office with the title but without the power," he said. "So it's a crazy-man clause, right? In the case of Trump, it presumes he behaves as president as he is behaving as president-elect."

"For my money, he's nuts — couldn't pass a sanity test, open book," Olbermann said. "But of course, Section Four of the 25th Amendment here does not say 'nuts' — or impaired, or erratic or unbalanced or unhealthy or bipolar or narcissist or sociopath or psychopath. It only says 'that the president is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office,'" a description that Olbermann found "kind of vague." Keith Olbermann sees you shaking your head. "Even if you loathe or fear Trump, you must look at this and say: 'This can't happen in a democracy, the people voted for him. You can't just un-president him,'" he said. "The hell you can't!" And he had another brief history lesson, this time about British prime ministers, to make that case. Watch below. Peter Weber