Biden’s Court-Packing Commission Is Packed With Far Left Partisans Unconcerned With the Text of the Constitution
Packing the Supreme Court would be one of the most radical acts ever carried out by a U.S. President. In fact, not since 1937 when President Franklin D. Roosevelt wanted to add six seats to the Supreme Court has any President seriously considered this far-reaching act. When FDR first tried this, he faced intense opposition, even from a Democrat-controlled Congress. But President Biden recently issued an Executive order establishing the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States, which will seek to provide an analysis of the principal arguments for and against Supreme Court reform.
Here, “reform” means Court-packing intended to rewrite the Constitution in the likeness of the Left. But that hasn’t stopped President Biden from flip-flopping on the issue.
As ACLJ Director of Policy Harry Hutchison has explained, “In 1983, then-Senator Biden stated that FDR’s attempt was a ‘bonehead idea.’ In 2020 while running for President, candidate Biden said the American people do not deserve to know his position on packing the Supreme Court, whose membership had been capped at nine since 1869.”
Even the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a legal icon of the Left, opposed the idea of changing the number of Supreme Court Justices. In a 2019 interview she said, “Nine seems to be a good number. It’s been that way for a long time; I think it was a bad idea when President Franklin Roosevelt tried to pack the court.” She continued, “If anything would make the court look partisan, it would be that – one side saying, ‘When we’re in power, we’re going to enlarge the number of judges, so we would have more people who would vote the way we want them to.’”
The more you look at the new commission, the clearer it becomes just how correct Justice Ginsburg was. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell puts it in stark perspective, “This faux-academic study of a nonexistent problem fits squarely within liberals’ years-long campaign to politicize the Court, intimidate its members, and subvert its independence as part of a malicious campaign to gain absolute power. This is not some new, serious, or sober pivot away from Democrats’ political attacks on the Court."
We recently outlined the charge of the Court-packing commission:
The commission is charged with studying the principal arguments in the contemporary public debate for and against Supreme Court reform, including an appraisal of the merits and legality of specific reform proposals. The topics will include an examination of (1) the genesis of the reform debate; (2) the Court’s role in the constitutional system; (3) the length of service and turnover of Justices on the Court; (4) the membership and size of the Court; and (5) the Court’s case selection, rules, and practices.
The commission has faced intense scrutiny since being announced. Senator Mitt Romney tweeted that his colleagues on the other side of the aisle “now cheer the effort to pack the Supreme Court and end the Senate filibuster, which would forever diminish institutions at our Republic’s foundation.”
President Biden’s Court-packing commission consists of 36 members, supposedly neutral, constitutional scholars and legal minds. However, upon further review of the members, it is clear that most of them are hard-Left partisans – individuals politically predisposed to have hostile viewpoints toward originalism and the role of the Constitution. It is likely that the majority of its members have already made up their minds on expanding the Supreme Court.
The commission is co-chaired by far Left activist political campaign lawyer Bob Bauer. He is a professor at the New York University School of Law. He served as White House Counsel to President Obama from 2009 to 2011. Bauer also served as a lawyer to the Democratic National Committee. His leftist credentials present a question regarding his fairness on the issue of packing the Court.
Kate Andrias, another member of the commission, also worked in the Obama White House Counsel’s office, serving as Special Assistant and Associate Counsel to President Obama and as chief of staff to the White House Counsel’s office.
The other co-chair on the commission is also a former Obama Administration official. From 2011 to 2013, Cristina Rodríguez was Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel at the U.S. Department of Justice under President Obama. She has been a law professor at Yale Law School and NYU Law School.
One of the more prominent members of the commission, Laurence Tribe, is a Harvard Law professor who has openly supported packing the Supreme Court. He recently supported the 1.20.21 Project, which seeks to expand the Supreme Court by four Justices.
Members of the House and Senate have already introduced new legislation to do just that – pack the Supreme Court by adding four new Justices.
Packing the Court has always been a bad idea. One of the most beautiful cornerstones of our democracy is the idea of an independent judiciary. Packing the Court undercuts that independence. We will continue to keep you updated on the progress and recommendations of this commission. We are prepared to take action to ensure that this effort to stack the highest Court in the land does not stand. Take action with us.