House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that she would consider the 25th Amendment of the Constitution on Friday, providing no other detail for her reasoning to do so.
The 25th Amendment provides formal instruction to grant the vice-president power to govern in the case that the president dies, is removed or resigns from office.
“Tomorrow, by the way, tomorrow, come here tomorrow. We're going to be talking about the 25th Amendment. But not to take attention away from the subject we have now,” she told reporters at her weekly news conference when she responded to a question about the next coronavirus relief package.
“I’m not talking about it today except to tell you, if you want to talk about that, we’ll see you tomorrow,” she said. “But you take me back to my point, Mr. President, when was the last time you had a negative test before you tested positive? Why is the White House not telling the country that important fact about how this made a hotspot of the White House?”
The president tested positive for COVID-19 early Friday morning and spent four days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to receive intense medical treatment. During his stay, the president’s doctors reported that he received therapeutics including Remdesivir and Regeneron since he had a fever, mild symptoms and required supplemental oxygen.
Amid Trump contracting the virus, a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) memo indicated that 34 White House staffers and “other contacts” have been infected with the coronavirus.
Despite Trump testing positive for the virus just last week, on Tuesday -- the next day after returning from Walter Reed -- the president departed from the residential area of the White House and spent time in the Oval Office, where he was surrounded by White House staffers and top campaign aides that could have been exposed to Trump’s transmission of the disease.
During an interview with Fox Business on Thursday morning, the president noted that he hasn’t been tested recently.
“No, I’ll be tested very soon, but I’m essentially very clean. They say it’s over a period of six, seven days,” Trump said.
But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people who have contracted the infection should isolate for 10 days since the initial onset of symptoms and report no fever for at least 24 hours without taking fever-reducing medications.
Pelosi also made comments on ABC News’s “The View” regarding Trump’s coronavirus treatment, as the medications he used, which included steroids, could have impaired his mental abilities as acting president.
“I said yesterday to my colleagues, I said there are those who say that the steroids had an impact on people’s thinking. I don’t know, but there are those health-care providers who say that,” Pelosi said Wednesday. “Also, if you have the coronavirus, it has an impact, as well.”
Rachel Bucchino is a reporter at the National Interest. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, U.S. News & World Report and The Hill.