Presidential Disability and the 25th Amendment

11.05.18 | 1 min read | Text by Steven Aftergood

Under the 25th amendment to the Constitution, a U.S. President could be declared “disabled” and removed from office against his will by the Vice President acting together with a majority of the Cabinet.

A new report from the Congressional Research Service details the background and provisions of the amendment.

Proponents of the 25th amendment insisted that it was “not intended to facilitate the removal of an unpopular or failed President,” and that safeguards were in place to prevent abuse.

While Presidents have voluntarily and temporarily declared themselves disabled on three occasions — in 1985, 2002 and 2007 — the provisions for involuntary removal from office have never been implemented. See Presidential Disability Under the Twenty-Fifth Amendment: Constitutional Provisions and Perspectives for CongressNovember 5, 2018.

Other new and updated reports from the Congressional Research Service include the following.

The Citizenship Clause and “Birthright Citizenship”: A Brief Legal OverviewCRS Legal Sidebar, November 1, 2018

Internships, Fellowships, and Other Work Experience Opportunities in the Federal Government, updated November 1, 2018

U.S. Trade Policy Functions: Who Does What?CRS In Focus, November 1, 2018

U.S. Foreign Aid to the Palestinians, updated November 2, 2018

The 2020 Decennial Census: Overview and IssuesCRS In Focus, October 31, 2018

Implementation of Treasury’s New Customer Due Diligence Rule: A Step Toward Beneficial Ownership Transparency?CRS In Focus, October 31, 2018

U.S. Ground Forces Robotics and Autonomous Systems (RAS) and Artificial Intelligence (AI): Considerations for Congress, November 1, 2018