HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » We are due for a course c...

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 07:59 AM

We are due for a course correction

To Balance the Scales of Justice, Donít Be Afraid to Pack the Court
The lifetime appointments of Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh cry out for Democratic hardball in response.
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/17/opinion/kavanaugh-trump-packing-court.html?te=1&nl=david-leonhardt&emc=edit_ty_20190917?campaign_id=39&instance_id=12436&segment_id=17083&user_id=ca02b127fa17b8d676fde27e367a12bbģi_id=89651072

<<snip>>

Democrats are left in an unenviable position. Should they win a federal ďtrifectaĒ ó the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives ó theyíll still have to deal with a Trump-branded judiciary. Itís entirely possible that a future Democratic agenda would be circumscribed and unraveled by a Supreme Court whose slim conservative majority owes itself to minority government and constitutional hardball.

So what should Democrats do? They should play hardball back. Congress, according to the Judiciary Act of 1789, decides the number of judges. Itís been 150 years since it changed the size of the Supreme Court. I think itís time to revisit the issue. Should Democrats win that trifecta, they should expand and yes, pack, the Supreme Court. Add two additional seats to account for the extraordinary circumstances surrounding the Gorsuch and Kavanaugh nominations. Likewise, expand and pack the entire federal judiciary to neutralize Trump and McConnellís attempt to cement Republican ideological preferences into the constitutional order.

The reasoning underpinning this proposal isnít just about the future; itís about the past. We have had two rounds of minority government in under two decades ó two occasions where executive power went to the popular-vote loser. Rather than moderate their aims and ambitions, both presidents have empowered ideologues and aggressively spread their influence. We are due for a course correction.

The goal isnít to make the courts a vehicle for progressive policy, but to make sure elected majorities can govern ó to keep the United States a democratic republic and not a judge-ocracy. Yes, there are genuine constitutional disputes, questions about individual rights and the scope of federal power. At the same time, there are broad readings of the Constitution ó ones that give our elected officials the necessary power to act and to solve problems ó and narrow readings, which handcuff and restrict the range of our government.

In the past, courts have walled entire areas of American life off from federal action. Theyíve put limits on American democracy and blocked the people, through their representatives, from tackling fundamental issues of public concern. During Reconstruction, courts handcuffed the government as it tried to address violence and state-sanctioned racism; during the Progressive Era, they kept Congress from putting the economy under some measure of democratic control.

Weíre living through a version of this right now. Under Chief Justice John Roberts, the Court has denied Medicaid coverage to millions of poor people, neutered the Voting Rights Act, authorized new waves of voter suppression, unleashed the power of money for entrenched interests and would-be oligarchs, and opened the door to extreme partisan gerrymandering. And while this Court hasnít brought the absurd Lochner-era doctrines that effectively made it impossible to legislate working conditions back from the dead, it has, in Justice Elena Kaganís phrase, ďweaponizedĒ the First Amendment to strike down economic regulation and undermine organized labor.

<<snip>>

16 replies, 3642 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread

Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 08:05 AM

1. The Republicans chose to make the Court political.

I think there should be one less partisan Republican on the Court and one more liberal or moderate judge, someone like Merrick Garland. Since that is not likely, it would be a course correction to add two more moderate or liberal judges to the bench. Mitch McConnell made the Court very political.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 08:35 AM

2. Expand the court, or live under GOP rule.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dalton99a (Reply #2)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 08:39 AM

3. People should be aware that it has been done before.

It would not be the first time.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 09:07 AM

4. I'm betting Justice Ginsberg will retire

After there's a Dem president. She's just holding on now to spite tRump.

We have to remember that if we expand the Court, rethugs will do it again if they ever get back in power.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bayard (Reply #4)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 09:23 AM

5. They will expand the court anyway if through normal practices we were to get the next two seats....

... denying them the majority position.

We have to stop playing by an honorable set of rules while the repugs go their own deceitful way. Always to their advantage.

Think the Moscow Mitch / Merrick Garland stealing of an Obama SCOTUS seat. Or the Moscow Mitch / Kavanaugh outrage.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bayard (Reply #4)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 09:26 AM

6. republicans don't feel limted by tit-for-tat.

they'd pack the court right now if they controlled the house and thought for one moment that democrats might win the trifecta.

then they'd filibuster any democratic effort to undo it or re-pack the court, and insist that they were being statesmanly while we were being petty and partisan.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bayard (Reply #4)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 12:15 PM

13. Disagree. I think she's holding on to protect the country.

Not a speck of spite. Grom where Iím standing anyway.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to mahina (Reply #13)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 02:57 PM

14. I'm sure you're right

I have enormous respect for her. But I also know tRump is hovering like a big buzzard, hoping she'll die.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink



Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 09:41 AM

7. Precedent: republicans in Arizona increased judges on state Supreme Court

Precedent: republicans in Arizona increased judges on state Supreme Court

By adding justices to the Arizona Supreme Court, did Ducey help the state ó or help himself?

https://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/arizona/2019/07/08/arizona-governor-said-expanding-supreme-court-would-bring-benefits-has-it-doug-ducey/2842733002/

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to keithbvadu2 (Reply #7)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 10:17 AM

10. Despicable Ducey has nothing to lose, term limited

and no where to go except out to pasture.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 09:44 AM

8. They should add 14 seats to SCOTUS

And pick men and women in their late 30s and early 40s.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 10:01 AM

9. Pete Buttiegieg has a good plan for the Supreme Court

expand it to 15: 5 Dem appointees, 5 Repub appointees, and 5 chosen by the other 10 judges.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 10:25 AM

11. The Country is far, far more progressive than the SC is

I fear that the Dems will not want to make any unprecedented changes to the SC but the Repukes will have no problem doing exactly that. When Moscow Mitch stole a seat, the gloves should have come off. It's time to start burying the Repukes with their own tactics. We can go back to normal order once there is no Repuke Party.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 10:32 AM

12. If the 'trifecta' is hit then they need to first set up a new playing field...this one stinks

They should add new Senators...Puerto Rico and perhaps D.C. They should write new Senate and House Rules to limit Republican interference in legislation. After that, IMO a Trumanesque remodeling of the federal government is in order. I would look to preventing a repeat of the recent monkey-wrenching of our federal regulatory agencies...perhaps they can even be removed from the Executive and placed beyond partisan interference. I would immediately look to form a new independent fully funded Voting Rights Commission with enforcement capabilities divorced from Justice. I would also look to new statutory language for judicial appointments allowing for removal for misconduct or political activity beyond those currently in place. IMO there are two justices who should be removed immediately. I most certainly want to see new statutory language requiring elected and appointed officials' compliance with Congressional subpeonas and judicial orders that affords criminal penalties and removal from office.

All this aside from investigating the misdeeds of the current administration. If we do not follow up on all the little BS abuses of power, then it becomes allowed in a political arena by default...the constant Hatch Act violations, the FBI agents from the NY Office interfering with the election by leaking misleading information, the unending emolument violations and self-dealing in government spending. The president is freaking making foreign policy decisions based on other nations willingness to help in his re-election effort. Our government is a stinking swamp and needs to be cleaned and sanitized. We also need to take preventative measures for the future.

Accountability must be a primary focus for this administration or what's the point is my point.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to dajoki (Original post)

Tue Sep 17, 2019, 05:23 PM

16. Pipe Dream

It's been tried before, in 1937 by FDR. It was a PR disaster, and was at least partially responsible for the dismal (for the Democrats) election in 1938. I really don't want to go down that road again.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread