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Politics Biden commission punts on whether to recommend expanding Supreme Court

04:17  07 december  2021
04:17  07 december  2021 Source:   nbcnews.com

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While Mr. Biden opposed court packing during the primaries, he has equivocated since the matter took on new urgency after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died last month and Republicans rushed to fill her seat amid the election endgame — an approach that has allowed the issue to fester and created “But the commission will assess all the options and make a recommendation to him.” Such proposals might go beyond the Supreme Court , she suggested, saying that the commission would “ recommend ways to restore balance to the Supreme Court specifically” but would also focus on the federal judiciary.

Biden has not said whether he supports expanding the court , also known as “ court packing”. “He believes that’s a decision Justice Breyer will make when he decides it’s time to no longer serve on the supreme court ,” she said. During his presidential campaign, Biden repeatedly sidestepped questions on expanding the court . A former chair of the Senate judiciary committee, Biden has asserted that the system of judicial nominations is “getting out of whack”, but has not said if he supports adding seats or making other changes to the current system of lifetime appointments, such as imposing term limits.

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court commission is not planning on making a recommendation on whether to expand the size of the court, according to a draft report obtained Monday by NBC News.

  Biden commission punts on whether to recommend expanding Supreme Court © Provided by NBC News

“The Commission takes no position on the validity or strength” of arguments for or against expanding the number of justices, the report said.

Instead, the report discusses the historical overview of court reform discussions, scenarios of expanding the Supreme Court, questions about the scope of the judiciary and judicial ethics.

The decision not to make a recommendation is likely to anger liberals who called for adding justices following the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett.

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WASHINGTON — Joe Biden is punting on the hypothetical question of how Democrats should retaliate if Republicans reverse their approach from 2016 to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's death . Asked by WBAY-TV in Wisconsin whether he'd be open to Progressives are agitating for the party to add seats to the Supreme Court in retaliation, which can be done by passing a new law. His hesitation to embrace or reject the idea of court expansion reflects the tension between his campaign pitch to restore institutions with a return to normalcy, and the outrage

Biden commission on Supreme Court reform is split on adding justices. A bipartisan White House commission agreed that Congress has the legal power to expand the Supreme Court , the group's draft discussion materials said. But the commission , created by President Joe Biden to study proposals to reform the high court , was divided on whether lawmakers should actually do it.

Biden created the commission in April to study the expanding the number of justices on the Supreme Court. He first proposed the commission as a presidential candidate, when the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and subsequent rapid confirmation of then-President Donald Trump’s nominee in the final weeks of the presidential election led many progressives to urge Biden to consider expanding the number of justices. Biden, a former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and veteran of politically charged confirmation battles, has not publicly embraced such a move.

The commission, consisting of more than two dozen experts, reviewed not just questions about the size of the Supreme Court, but also structural changes like term limits and reducing the power of the federal judiciary.

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President Joe Biden on Friday named a panel to study possible changes to the U.S. Supreme Court , including calls for term limits and more justices, fulfilling a campaign promise as progressives push to overhaul a court they say has been unfairly stacked with conservatives. The 36-member commission will consist heavily of academics, along with a handful of former judges and courtroom advocates. The co-chairs, former White House Counsel Bob Bauer and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Cristina Rodriguez, are both veterans of former Democratic President Barack Obama’s administration.

President Biden signed an executive order Friday establishing a commission to study whether to add seats to the Supreme Court and other reform proposals, the White House announced, fulfilling a promise he made on the campaign trail. “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 release.


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The panel's initial findings, released in October based on months of public hearings and research, revealed that its members were divided on the issue of altering the structure and size of the court.

“As a legal matter, we conclude that Congress has broad power to structure the Supreme Court by expanding (or contracting) the number of Justices. The prudential question is more difficult, and Commissioners are divided on whether Court expansion would be wise," the October report stated.

Monday's draft report details the difference of opinions among commissioners about the various questions they were asked to examine. A source familiar with the panel's work told NBC News that there has never been a commission of this size on this issue and that the contributions it makes to the debate are unique.

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"The Commission did not attempt to discern whether the Court is beset by a crisis of legitimacy today, nor do we take a position on whether the Court ’s independence is at risk or whether it has become too anti-democratic," said a draft document released before a meeting Friday. "Far-left progressives are clearly trying to expand their political power under the guise of ' court reform,'" said Kelly Shackelford of First Liberty Institute. Two conservatives quit Friday, leaving 36 members on the panel. Although the commission sidestepped the legitimacy question, a Gallup Poll in September found the Supreme

The Biden administration is assembling a bipartisan commission to consider expanding the US Supreme Court — an idea that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer this week called “the big one.” Several leading lawyers and former Justice Department officials have been recruited for the panel Schumer also called the notion of expanding the nine-member Supreme Court “the big one,” but declined to say if he favored doing it. Instead, Schumer said he would wait for a recommendation from the commission , which Biden last year pledged to create, with a mandate to issue a report within

The panel plans to vote on Tuesday on whether to adopt the report as its final official report, which will then be submitted to the White House. Copies are also expected to be sent to Capitol Hill.

The White House has had “no involvement whatsoever” in the work of the commission, sources told NBC News.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday that there is no timeframe for when the president will review the report.

"The President will then get the report and will have time to review the report, but I don't have a timeline for how long it will take him to review the report," she told reporters.

"I would remind you all: It's not recommendations that he either accepts or denies. He asked this diverse group of experts across the political spectrum, from across the viewpoint spectrum to look at and assess a range of issues that have long been discussed and debated by Court experts ... and to assess and provide a review of that, not to make, again, 'here are the five recommendations; accept them or deny them.'”

The one good thing that could come from Gavin Newsom trolling the Supreme Court .
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usr: 1
This is interesting!