(WXYZ) — Members of the United States Congress were forced to take cover inside the House chamber of the nation’s capitol building as an angry mob breached the front gates, forcing their way inside the building.
The certification of Joe Biden's electoral college victory was brought to a halt, and the chamber evacuated.
"Suddenly the Secret Service rushed in to pull Vice President Pence off the podium very quickly," recalled Senator Gary Peters of Michigan. "The Sergeant of Arms jumped up very quickly and asked everybody to stay in place, there was an emergency.”
Once lawmakers got to safety and learned President Trump directed the crowd to the Capitol, many of those same lawmakers began calling for his removal.
“I think we need to invoke the 25th amendment," said US Representative Andy Levin of Michigan. "I think his time is up.”
Levin and more than a handful of other Michigan members of Congress are now calling for the same.
“Certainly President Trump is not fit to be President," Senator Peters said. "He needs to be removed.”
"It certainly is possible,” said Richard Primus, a constitutional law professor at the University of Michigan Law School.
Primus says impeachment could be done quickly if there’s enough support in Congress, and the move could bring an end to his political future.
“A president who is impeached and removed could also be penalized with the penalty of not being eligible to run for office again,” Primus said.
The 25th amendment is a temporary measure where the Vice President and the President's own cabinet take control if they feel the President is unfit to lead. That too has checks and balances. President Trump can object, and the cabinet would have to invoke it again. Then, the final say would go to Congress for a 2/3 majority vote.
“Congress officially has 21 days to decide, and we’re fewer than 21 days to January 20th," Primus said. "So if they wanted to walk it slow, they could.”
Whether or not their calls for removal come true, the lawmakers who were forced to spend much of yesterday in hiding are today coming out in full force.
“Clearly responsibility lies with this President," Senator Peters said, "This president has engaged in behaviors that we have never seen ever and hopefully never will again.”