There are two legal ways to end a presidency besides simply denying the president a second term at the polls, There is the impeachment route which can often stimulate a resignation as in the case of Richard Nixon. There is also the 25Th Amendment route which may prove to be a means of ending Donald Trump's tenure.

The Amendment covers many succession issues

I have been wondering why the 25th Amendment has not been used. It has, of course, to cover various succession issues. But not Article 4 which involves an aggressive effort to remove a president deemed unwell or otherwise unfit to serve.

It would have been lovely if we could have gotten W out before he went into Iraq. Perhaps LBJ could have been removed prior to the lies with which he justified the escalation of the Vietnam war. The fact is that presidents deemed in their right mind have managed to do all manner of harm without a finger being lifted to say they are unfit.

Trump has not earned ejection yet but he's getting there

Trump has not equaled either of these presidents in the amount of harm he has caused. And yet he is discussed almost daily as a prime candidate for 4th Article treatment under the 25th Amendment. What does this article say? It says the Vice President can with a majority of the Cabinet tell the Congress that a president is unable to "discharge the powers and duties of his office".

The 25th Amendment is getting a lot of reads

If all goes as planned the veep becomes acting-president. There is more. In the event the president says no way, Congress gets into the act and can reverse the decision.

Here is a summary:

Here is a survey of options deemed most unlikely.

The particular cause of removal under the #25th Amendment might be unprecedented but justified. Donald Trump may not go bonkers. He may not become permanently disabled. But he could move more and more toward being a dictator.

This was clearly not why this clause was written. But it is not outside the realm of possibility. If Trump should be deemed, as he has already been, to be consistently violating the Constitution with orders and incitements that are clearly beyond the pale, then his fitness is an issue.

A possible scenario

There is no doubt whatsoever that Trump could be vulnerable if his behavior was such that a crystal clear majority of Americans, in all states and including Trump voters, evoked a thumbs-down. I have surmised what I believe to be the scenario that would lead to such a sense.

It would involve seeking to impose martial law in response to demonstrations arising from acts attributed to him or his administration.

If for example health care turned into local donnybrooks and Trump was clearly inciting violence, that could be the trigger. If Trump's attack on Obamacare alienates his base, that would be something to watch.