WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. André Carson, D-Indianapolis, said it’s clear President Donald Trump is unfit for office, but doesn’t think there will be enough time to go through impeachment proceedings before he leaves the White House.
Carson was in the Capitol building Wednesday afternoon when rioters broke into the building and occupied it for a few hours. He said he was in his office when he got a notification from Capitol police to stay locked down.
“This wasn’t just an assault on Congress and our colleagues, this was an assault on democracy,” Carson said Thursday afternoon. “This is what happens when demagoguery goes unchecked. You have these ridiculous conspiracy theories that go unchallenged. The violence at the Capitol was and is domestic terrorism and, quite frankly, an armed insurrection. It was an attempted, or a symbolic, coup d'état. It’s absolutely sedition. It was a riot, plain and simple. And this was not a protest. It was dissent.”
He said the only similar event he can remember since being in Congress is when the members of the Tea Party rallied in Washington during the heath care debate in 2010.
Carson said Trump has “enflamed his base.”
“Donald Trump has repeatedly and intentionally misled his supporters with lies about immigrants, refugees, Muslims, people of color, people with disabilities, people in the LGBTQ community – even with the former president’s birth certificate,” he said.
There have been reports in national media outlets about invoking the 25th Amendment – where the vice president and either the president’s cabinet or members of Congress declare that the president is unable to perform the duties of the office. If that happens, Vice President Mike Pence would take over until the end of the term.
Carson said he would support invoking 25th Amendment.
“There’s already support on both sides of the aisle,” he said. “It’s never too late to do the right thing, I suppose. But it’s been clear for a very long time that he is unclear for office,”
If the 25th Amendment isn’t invoked, the timing for impeachment is difficult. Carson said the U.S. House is in recess for about a week and a half. After they return from recess, it will be time to swear in Joe Biden as president.
“These attempts have symbolic value, but honestly once we get past recess, he’ll be gone anyway,” Carson said.
WRTV reached out to Republican Sen. Mike Braun for an interview Thursday. His office didn't respond to the interview request.