Democrats on Thursday announced a bill that would add four justices to the Supreme Court.
But it was only a few years ago that they were insisting the court be kept to nine.
The difference? The Democrats were in the minority then.
One supporter of the bill, Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., appeared in a photograph just a few years ago claiming nine justices was the right number.
That brought a one-word response from Colorado Republican Rep. Ken Buck: “Hypocrisy.”
— Ken Buck (@BuckForColorado) April 15, 2021
The House plan is sponsored by Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., who orchestrated much of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s two impeachment campaigns against President Trump; Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga.; and Rep. Mondaire Jones, D-N.Y.
Fox News reported George Washington University law professor and constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley was appalled.
“There is nothing subtle or elegant in the move. Just a raw muscle play to take control of the Court,” he wrote on Twitter.
If the report is true, they have decided not to wait for the Commission. A move to just add 4 new justices would dispense with even the pretense of principle. The bill will now strip away any semblance of constitutional values for members who do not denounce raw court packing.
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) April 14, 2021
Ultimately, this shows the cost of a failure of leadership in the Democratic party, including President Biden. Rather than denounce court packing, Biden played to the far left and called for a Commission to study something he called a “bone headed” and “terrible, terrible idea.”
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) April 15, 2021
It’s not that the court hasn’t recently made decisions favorable to the Democrats’ far-left base. The 2015 same-sex marriage decision, described by the chief justice as unconnected to the Constitution, blew up millennia of precedent, effectively redefining marriage.
But Democrats were infuriated that the Senate didn’t act on Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland near the end of his term, and President Trump filled that seat. Trump then filled two other vacancies during his term.
Markey claimed Republicans “broke” the court, insisting that adding new justices is the only repair possible.
— Ed Markey (@EdMarkey) April 15, 2021
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the court-packing scheme wasn’t on her agenda but she is open to the idea. Instead, She backs President Joe Biden’s commission to study possible expansion of the Supreme Court.
“I don’t know that that’s a good idea or a bad idea. I think it’s an idea that should be considered,” she said. “Its not out of the question.”
The legislation likely would not pass the House. Pelosi can lose only two Democrats on any bill, and Democrats have only a one-vote majority in the Senate and would have to eliminate the filibuster.
Democrats promoting the bill claimed they were “repairing” damage to the court. But their complaints focused on the argument that their liberal agenda had not been advanced in recent court decisions.
REP NADLER: “We’re not packing the Supreme Court, we’re unpacking it”pic.twitter.com/5gcbZuexfh
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) April 15, 2021
Nadler declared Thursday to media, “We’re not packing it, we’re unpacking it.”
The comment brought a reaction on Twitter: “Adding is subtracting. Up is down and down is up.”
Rep. Jones of New York declard on Twitter, “Supreme Court expansion is infrastructure.”
Fox News reported Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the Democrats’ move is a threat to the justices.
McConnell described it as a “hostage-taking” move aimed to ensure there is a “sword dangling” over the justices as they weigh how they will rule in future cases.
“It’s not just about whether this insane bill becomes law,” McConnell said. “Part of the point here are the threats themselves. The left wants a sword dangling over the justices when they weigh the facts in every case.”
He said, as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., publicly threatened the justices two years ago, the Democrats want them to know they will “pay the price” for ruling against the Democratic agenda.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said the Democrats’ plan would “dismantle the government institution.”
First Liberty Institute posted video warning of the Democrats’ “Supreme Court coup.”
First Liberty also published a white paper on the issue.
“Preserving the independence of the judiciary is essential to preserving our constitutional democracy,” said First Liberty President Kelley Shackelford.
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