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Biden's Supreme Court Will Mean End of Independent Judiciary

Biden's Supreme Court Will Mean End of Independent Judiciary

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By Friday, 16 April 2021 01:49 PM Current | Bio | Archive

President Joe Biden’s executive order last week creating a bipartisan commission to study "structural changes" to the Supreme Court sends a clarion message of his administration’s plan to fundamentally dismantle third branch judiciary checks on unconstitutional executive and legislative branch overreaches.

According to a White House press release: "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 executive order says, "The topics it will examine include the genesis of the reform debate; the Court’s role in the Constitutional system; the length of service and turnover of justices on the Court; the membership and size of the Court; and the Court’s case selection, rules, and practices."

Read all of this to mean that it will provide the rationale and legal framework for court-packing.

And we can be both confident and depressed to expect the politically left-loaded 36-member commission not to disappoint Joe and his handlers. Its co-chairs are Bob Bauer, Barack Obama’s former White House counsel, and Cristina Rodriguez, a former official in the Obama Justice Department.

Formerly billed as "Mr. Moderate," Joe Biden’s recent leftward lurch with a promise to be the “most progressive president ever” is dramatically illustrated by his radically changed court-packing political positions.

In 1983, amid a move by President Reagan to replace three members of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, then-Sen. Biden argued that while the president was "within his right to do" so, it threatened the credibility of the commission, comparing it to FDR’s attempt in 1937 to pack the Supreme Court.

Biden had then argued that while FDR "was totally within his right to do so… it was a "bonehead idea," a "terrible, terrible mistake to make," which would "put in question, if for an entire decade, the independence of the most-significant body … in this country, the Supreme Court of the United States of America."

Even as recently as last year on the campaign trail, Biden repeatedly claimed that he was "not a fan of court packing."

During an interview with 60 Minutes, he said, "The last thing we need to do is turn the Supreme Court into just another political football, whoever’s got the most votes gets whatever they want."

Closer to the election, to appease progressives during a Democratic meltdown over Donald Trump’s appointment of three high court nominees, Biden’s handlers changed his political game plan to reverse his earlier campaign position.

Incidentally, those Trump Justices subsequently repudiated attacks as partisan apparatchiks by refusing to hear lawsuits filed by 19-state attorneys general over 2020 state race election irregularities.

Nevertheless, Joe said that, if elected, "I’ll put together a national . . .  bipartisan commission of scholars, constitutional scholars. Democrats, Republicans. Liberal, conservative. And I will ask them to, over 180 days, come back to me with recommendations as to how to reform the court system, because it’s getting out of whack."

The Supreme Court "reform" message is a not-so-veiled threat against Justices who are being put on notice to think twice about making rulings that progressives dislike.

Democrat Senate Party Whip Dick Durbin, who chairs the Judiciary Committee, signed on to a 2019 Supreme Court brief all but threatening the Justices with court-packing if their ruling in a Second Amendment case displeased him.

This warning comes amid myriad presidential executive orders and congressional legislative bills that are certain to raise top court constitutional challenges. Think, for example, the Biden administration’s proposals to "rid America of epidemic gun violence,," and to end fossil- fueled energy independence to save planet from its "greatest existential threat," climate change.

The High Court will soon have to deal with an ever-increasing raft of important new lawsuits that are being filed against the Biden administration by state governments.

Texas and Louisiana attorneys general have recently sued the federal government alleging that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement authorities have declined to take custody of convicted criminals who are being released into their states’ communities rather than deported.

Attorneys general from 13 states have also sued the Biden administration over a key element of the recently enacted $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief law that prevents states from using government aid to lower taxes.

Filed in a U.S. District Court in Alabama, the lawsuit asks judges to strike down a provision in the American Rescue Plan that bars state governments from using the roughly $195 billion in federal funding "to either directly or indirectly offset a reduction in the net tax revenue."

Political offensives to pack the nation’s highest court come at an ironic time when the Biden administration and Democratic Party are in a position to shape its ideological composition through normal channels as previous Democrat appointees are beginning to retire and new nominees will likely sweep through the Democratic-controlled Senate.

These threats also come at a particularly dangerous time when public trust in American institutions – confidence in protections of voting integrity most particularly – are at an alarming low.

As pointed out in The Wall Street Journal, “the Supreme Court isn’t immune. If the commission endorses court-packing, or some other ‘reform’ that smacks of an attempt to shape legal outcomes, the political backlash will be furious.”

Justice Stephen Breyer acknowledged in a speech earlier this month that adding Justices would damage the public’s view of the Court and the rule of law, stating that "Structural alteration motivated by the perception of political influence can only feed the latter perception, further eroding that trust."

Joe had made that very same case during a Democratic primary debate last year when he said "I would not get into court packing. We had three justices. Next time around, we lose control, they add three justices. We begin to lose any credibility the court has at all."

Although any attempt to pack the Supreme Court may very well not make it through the present Senate —​ which may change Democratic control altogether next year —​ liberal President Biden would be wise to heed his own moderate presidential candidate Biden advice in 2019.

Prudently, Joe then said: "No, I’m not prepared to go on and try to pack the court, because we’ll live to rue that day."

Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture and the graduate space architecture program. His latest of 10 books, "What Makes Humans Truly Exceptional," (2021) is available on Amazon along with all others. Read Larry Bell's Reports — More Here.

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LarryBell
President Biden would be wise to heed his own moderate presidential candidate Biden advice in 2019. Prudently, Joe then said: "No, I’m not prepared to go on and try to pack the court, because we’ll live to rue that day."
commission, executive, fdr, lawsuit, order
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2021-49-16
Friday, 16 April 2021 01:49 PM
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