- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 9, 2018

Vice President Mike Pence says he has “never” been part of a conversation about invoking the 25th Amendment to potentially remove President Trump from office — a subject mentioned in a recent op-ed by an anonymous administration official.

“No. Never. And why would we be?” Mr. Pence said in an interview for CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

“I mean the truth of the matter is over the last eight years, despite what we heard from President Obama on Friday, I mean this country was struggling,” he said. “I mean, it was the weakest economic recovery since the Great Depression because having inherited a recession, President Obama’s answer was to raise taxes, to double the national debt, to increase regulation, to pass Obamacare into law, to stifle American energy.”

The opinion piece by a “senior official” in the Trump administration, published last week by the New York Times, said there were “early whispers” within the Cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which allows a majority of Cabinet members to tell Congress the president is incapable of discharging his duties and at least temporarily transfer the powers of the office to the vice president.

“But no one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis,” the official wrote. “So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until — one way or another — it’s over.”

The op-ed has prompted a frenzy of speculation both within the White House and outside of it as to who the author is, as well as a wave of denials from administration officials.

Mr. Pence’s office had previously denied that the vice president was the author, and Mr. Pence said he is “100 percent confident” that no one on his staff was involved.

“I don’t have to ask them because I know them,” he said. “I know their character. I know their dedication and I am absolutely confident that no one on the vice president’s staff had anything to do with this. But that being said, you know, whoever this was they should do the honorable thing and resign.”

Mr. Pence said whoever wrote the editorial doesn’t know what really goes on in the White House.

“I’ve seen this president in action. Is he demanding? Yes. Is he a strong leader who expects things done yesterday? Yes,” he said. “But for someone to say that that what we’ve accomplished in the last 18 months is in spite of this president’s leadership, this just reflects an ignorance about President Trump and about our administration.”

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