Exploring the 25th Amendment

Exploring the 25th Amendment
Image by Wynn Pointaux from Pixabay

What is the 25th Amendment?

  • It’s an amendment to the Constitution of the United States.
  • Passed by Congress on July 6, 1965.
  • Ratified by the states on February 10, 1967.
  • Certified by President Lyndon Johnson on February 23, 1967.
  • Provides the course of action for the replacement of the president or vice president in the event of incapacitation, resignation, removal, or death.


  1. The Vice President becomes President if the President is removed from office, dies, or resigns.
  2. When there’s a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President nominates a Vice President who must be confirmed by the majority vote of the House of Representatives and Congress.
  3. The Vice President becomes Acting President when the President gives the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House a written declaration of his inability to perform his duties.
  4.  When the Vice President and a Cabinet majority provide the written declaration of the President’s inability to perform his duties to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House, the Vice President immediately becomes the Acting President. If the President provides a written declaration that he’s able to perform his duties, then he’ll resume his duties. However, the  Vice President and a Cabinet majority or Congress have less than four days to provide a written declaration disagreeing with the President. Therefore prompting Congress to assemble within forty-eight hours to decide the issue by a two-thirds vote within twenty-one days after receipt.

Times the 25th Amendment Invoked

  • 10/12/1973 – President Richard Nixon nominated Gerald R. Ford to fill the vacancy left by Vice President Spiro Agnew’s resignation.
  • 8/9/1974 – Vice President Gerald R. Ford sworn in as President after President Richard Nixon resigns on 8/8/74.
  • 8/20/1974 – President Gerald R. Ford nominates Nelson Rockefeller to be Vice President.
  • 7/13/1985 – President Ronald Reagan transferred power to Vice President George H.W. Bush while he underwent surgery.
  • 6/29/2002 – President George W. Bush transferred power to Vice President Dick Cheney prior to going under anesthesia for a colonoscopy and repeated it in 2007.

The Insurrection and President Trump

After the U.S. Capitol insurrection on 1/6/2021, some lawmakers floated the idea of removing President Trump from office via the 25th Amendment or impeachment. However, the vice president decided against it. On 1/13/2021, the House of Representatives impeached President Trump for the second time.The 25th Amendment Word Search If you’d like to download a copy of this word search, click here.

All About the 25th Amendment Crossword PuzzleIf you’d like to download a copy of the crossword puzzle, click here.