President Donald Trump released a video on Thursday in which he admitted for the first time in public that President-elect Joe Biden's administration would take charge on January 20. However the offer was met with skepticism. The doubters think his move is aimed at saving himself from action under the 25th amendment or impeachment.
In the video, which Trump shared on social media, he said: "A new administration will be inaugurated on January 20." He had earlier told supporters that he would never concede to Biden. After the attack on the US Capitol, he finally acknowledged that he won't serve a second term.
In his speech following the riot in Washington Trump said: "Now tempers must be cooled, and calm restored. We must get on with the business of America. My focus now turns to ensure a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power."
The Change of the Wind
The president was blocked from Twitter for 12 hours on Wednesday after he released a video in which he told the rioters, "you are very special" and "we love you". These pro-Trump supporters descended on the Capitol building directly after Trump attended a rally outside the White House.
"We want to go back and we want to get this right. Because we are going to have somebody in there that should not be in there and our country will be destroyed and we're not going to stand for that," Trump told his followers at that rally.
But then, he took a U-turn on Thursday. In the newly released video, he said: "To those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction, you do not represent our country. And to those who broke the law, you will pay."
This led to another trending topic on Twitter—"Teleprompter Trump." There are many social media users who now think that Trump will contradict himself soon and say something completely opposite to what had said in the video.
Evan McMullin, a former CIA operations officer, said: "Is anyone still falling for Teleprompter Trump?" Chris Lu, who served as the US Deputy Secretary of Labor under the Obama administration, said on Twitter, "In case you missed the last four years: Teleprompter Trump isn't the real Trump. Give it a few hours and he'll disavow everything he was just forced to say."
Impeachment and 25th Amendment
Trump faced the threat on Thursday of a second impeachment a day after the violence at the US Capitol. The new video was released at a time when Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State and Steve Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury, discussed using the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office. As reported by CNBC, both the top officials held informal conversations within their own agencies about the possibility of invoking the 25th Amendment, which will allow Vice President Mike Pence and the Cabinet to declare the president unfit to discharge his duties and assume power.
Meanwhile, Republican US Representative Adam Kinzinger called for the 25th Amendment to be invoked. "All indications are that the president has become unmoored, not just from his duty or even his oath, but from reality itself," he said on Twitter.
Many cabinet secretaries informally discussed invoking 25th Amendment but CNN reported that it is "highly unlikely" that Pence would pursue that path at this point.
Top Democratic leaders, including House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, called for immediate impeachment proceedings if Pence and Trump's cabinet refused to take steps to remove him from power. They said in a statement, "The president's dangerous and seditious acts necessitate his immediate removal from office."