Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall and a multistate coalition of 20 attorneys general on Thursday wrote to President Joe Biden and congressional leaders to voice strong concerns and opposition to the recent steps Democrats have taken towards packing the U.S. Supreme Court.
This comes after Biden recently announced the formation of the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States, which will explore potential court reforms and address issues, including the size of the court. Days later, Democratic members of Congress introduced a bill to expand the court from nine justices to 13.
Marshall and 19 other attorneys general argue that as judicial independence is a core tenet of America’s judicial system and the bulwark upholding our rights and liberties, the recent actions by Biden and fellow Democrats threaten the independence of our federal judicial system and the rule of law.
“We have 152 years of precedent to establish that nine members will serve on our United States Supreme Court. We’ve seen that become the most trusted branch of government to be an appropriate check on both executive and legislative powers,” stated Marshall. “Now for Democrats to be able to say, there needs to be a change without a compelling reason, is clearly just an effort by Democrats to be able to obtain additional power.”
The Framers of the U.S. Constitution created an independent judiciary, due to the judicial abuses experienced under King George III and to prevent the new federal government from repeating those abuses. The last similar attempt by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt more than 80 years ago failed because of how it threatened our constitutional system. Notably, Justices Ruth B. Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer have recently condemned such schemes to pack the court.
The coalition letter outlines, “Indeed, given the filing of the bill six days after the president announced his Executive Order regarding the Supreme Court, it is clear that the Commission on the Supreme Court is nothing but a coordinated attempt to justify a naked political power grab by the leaders of Congress and the president. We believe that such actions will seriously undermine our constitutional system, the public’s confidence in our courts, and the rule of law. We oppose passage of such a measure.”
Read the full letter here.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn