There are preliminary discussions underway among some members of President Trump's Cabinet to invoke the 25th amendment, sources tell CNN. The amendment authorizes the vice president to step in and serve as president should the president become "unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office," and Axios reports it's just one of a number of options currently under discussion by "current and former White House and GOP Hill aides, and Republican lobbyists and political consultants—all of whom have either embraced him or quietly tolerated him until now." That includes senior State Department officials, sources say. Other options include censure or impeachment. One of the administration officials who spoke to the Washington Post about talks among aides of removing Trump from office described him as "beyond the pale," another went with "monster."
TMZ, citing the White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, claims lawmakers met at a secret DC location Wednesday to discuss the use of the 25th amendment. The Hill reports Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee have formally asked Pence to invoke it, and CNBC reports a large US trade group has done the same. In addition to Pence, either a majority of Trump's cabinet or two-thirds of both houses of Congress would need to be on board, and Axios notes it's not at all clear there's enough support to proceed with that option—or enough time for another impeachment trial. As for Trump, those who spoke to the Post say he spent Wednesday night "cocooned" at the White House, speaking only to those most loyal to him, and so angry with Pence he "couldn't see straight." Pence, for his part, is similarly unhappy with Trump's criticism of him, sources tell CNN. (Read more President Trump stories.)