By JOHN KANELIS / firstname.lastname@example.org
All right, President Biden.
You said during the 2020 presidential campaign that you opposed expanding the number of justices serving on the Supreme Court. I am going to hold you to that notion as you launch the formation of a bipartisan commission to study SCOTUS “reform.”
Mr. President, the court functions just fine with nine justices. You are getting pressure from the left to expand the court to select more justices who fit your philosophical world view. That’s a bad idea.
Is the court composed of a majority of jurists I favor? No, but you know the saying about how “elections have consequences.” The 2016 election delivered serious consequences, indeed, when Donald Trump was elected president and he was able to get three justices confirmed in his single term in office.
I don’t like the court’s solid conservative majority any more than the lefties do. However, packing the court with more justices and then finding the “correct” jurists to fill those seats plays fast and loose with the founders’ efforts to de-politicize the federal judiciary.
I accept the White House statement on the commission: “The Commission’s purpose is to provide an analysis of the principal arguments in the contemporary public debate for and against Supreme Court reform, including an appraisal of the merits and legality of particular reform proposals,” the White House said in a statement. “The topics it will examine include the genesis of the reform debate; the Court’s role in the Constitutional system; the length of service and turnover of justices on the Court; the membership and size of the Court; and the Court’s case selection, rules, and practices.”
While we’re at it, Mr. President, let’s not limit the terms of the justices, either. There is no compelling need to usher them out the door after they reach a certain age. As long as they are able to do the job, they should be allowed to stay on the court and play a role in determining the constitutionality of federal law.
That all said, good luck with the commission. Just don’t go too far.