Mainstream media has started to question President Trump’s mental health in hopes the 25th Amendment could be used to force him from office.
The latest broadsides came from a book that claims the president is increasingly forgetful, repeats stories word-for-word, and frequently fails to recognize old friends, and a Politico report that a Yale psychiatrist told 15 Democrat members of Congress and one Republican senator the president’s mental health was “unraveling” and a potential danger to the public.
Reports of Democrats questioning Trump’s mental health date to the dawn of his campaign. Some Democrats have pointed to slurred speech and what they see as diminished mental capacity, but most cite his aggressive pushback against what he considers fake news or unfair coverage and his extensive use of Twitter to bypass the mainstream media as proof.
The book, “Fire and Fury,” is written Hollywood Reporter columnist Michael Wolff. Wolff wrote that the president, who is 71, failed to recognize a succession of old friends at Mar-a-Lago just before the new year.
White House staffers have learned to cover for the president by, among other things, requiring interviewers to submit questions beforehand, Wolff wrote. Sean Hannity said he has interviewed numerous times over the period Wolff describes and never been asked to submit questions beforehand.
The Daily Mail also wrote that Sen. Bob Corker, (R.-Tenn.) and Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough – both critics of the president – have questioned his stability.
The White House said it is “disgraceful and laughable” to suggest the president is unfit to serve. “If he was unfit, he probably wouldn’t be sitting there, wouldn’t have defeated the most qualified group of candidates the Republican Party has ever seen,” Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the president’s press secretary said.
As for Dr. Bandy X. Lee, the Yale psychiatry professor who told more than a dozen “concerned” members of Congress of the president’s impending unraveling, has become something of a go-to person for Democrats who want to be able to claim they were warned of the president’s dangerous mental condition.
She convened a conference on Trump’s mental health in April, edited a book entitled “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump” that came out in October and since has met with the dozen members of Congress, accepted an invitation from one to speak to still more members and appeared at a town hall meeting with one of Congress’ most leftist members, Jamie Raskin of Maryland.
She knows she has tapped into a growth industry. “One senator said that it was the meeting he most looked forward to in 11 years,” Lee said. “Their concern about the president’s dangerousness was surprisingly high.”
Lee, whose specialty is violence prevention, told the members Trump is obsessed with violent videos and his tweets represent dangerous expressions of that violence within him. “We feel that the rush of tweeting is an indication of his falling apart under stress. Trump is going to get worse and will become uncontainable with the pressures of the presidency,” Lee told Politico.
She had renewed concern about Trump’s tweet on North Korea leader, Kim Jong Un. After Kim threatened the U.S., saying he has a nuclear button on his desk, Trump responded: “North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the “Nuclear Button” is on his desk at all times.” Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”
Lee released a statement on behalf of the National Coalition of Concerned Mental Health Experts saying, “We believe that he is now further unraveling in ways that contribute to his belligerent nuclear threats … We urge that those around him, and our elected representatives in general, take urgent steps to restrain his behavior and head off the potential nuclear catastrophe that endangers not only Korea and the United States but all of humankind.”
To which Sanders responded: “The president and the people of this country should be concerned about the mental fitness of the leader of North Korea … This is a president who’s not going to cower down.”