In either a sign of internal division within the Democrat Party or perhaps evidence of an ulterior strategic motive, a high-profile move to tilt the balance of the highest court in the land has just failed to attract the support of the one person who could ensure its success.
According to The Hill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has announced that she currently has “no plans” to bring a bill promoted by a group of liberal lawmakers that would expand the composition of the U.S. Supreme Court to a vote in the lower chamber.
On Thursday, Congressional lawmakers led by Democrat Reps. Jerry Nadler (NY), Hank Johnson (GA) and Mondaire Jones (NY) introduced legislation that would add four seats to the high court, bringing the total number of justices to nine in an ongoing push on the part of progressives to bring structural change to the judiciary.
It did not take long, however, for significant opposition to the proposal to emerge, with the White House and Pelosi both declaring their preference for instead allowing the work of President Joe Biden’s newly-formed commission on court reform to proceed as planned, according to the Daily Caller.
Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Pelosi said she did not intend to bring the Democrat-sponsored court-packing bill to a vote on the House floor, saying, “I support the president’s commission to study such a proposal, but frankly I’m not – right now, we’re back, our members our committees are working,” adding:
I don’t know if that’s a good idea or a bad idea. I think it’s an idea that should be considered and I think the president’s taking the right approach to have a commission to study such a thing.
The speaker did, however, take pains to suggest that adding seats to the court is “not out of the question,” adding, according to The Hill, “It has been done before in the history of our country a long time ago. And the growth of our country, the size of our country, the growth of our challenges in terms of the economy, etc., might necessitate such a thing.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki expressed a similar sentiment, stating, “[The commission] is going to come back to the president with a report on what their discussions are and what their findings are, so he’s gonna wait for that to play out and wait to read that report,” as the Daily Caller noted.
During an appearance on Fox News’ Outnumbered, former U.S. Attorney and network contributor Andrew McCarthy hypothesized that all of the Democrats’ fevered work in support of court-packing may in fact be designed more to intimidate current and future members of the nine-member court into hewing to a more progressive line of jurisprudence than to actually force a substantial structural change, as the Daily Caller noted separately.
Whether the left truly intends to alter the court’s numerical makeup, or is simply engaged in an strong-arm tactic meant to influence outcomes at the high court, it seems clear that Democrats will not rest until the judiciary is successfully transformed into a rubber stamp for their radical policy objectives.