Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden admitted Monday that he is “not a fan” of court-packing (adding seats to the Supreme Court) but did not go further about whether he plans to do so should he be elected president in November.
“I’m not a fan of court packing, but I don’t want to get off on that whole issue. I want to keep focused,” Biden told WKRC-TV. “The president would like nothing better than to fight about whether or not I would in fact pack the court or not pack the court, etc. The focus is, why is he doing what he’s doing now?”
The former vice president made the comments after he was pressed once again on the issue while campaigning in Cincinnati, Ohio. He and running mate Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) have refused for weeks to clearly state their intentions on the matter.
WKRC-TV reporter Kyle Inskeep spurred Biden into answering on the matter by asking the candidate what he would say to undecided voters who would like to know his intentions about packing the court prior to the election.
In his response, Biden also attempted to transfer the heat onto his political opponents by suggesting that President Trump and Republicans are the ones who are actually court-packing by attempting to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
“What I want them to focus on, [what] I’d respectfully suggest, is that court-packing is going on now,” Biden said. “Never before, when an election has already begun and millions of votes are already cast, has it ever been that a Supreme Court nominee is put forward.”
“One of the reasons is the only shot the American people get to determine who will be on a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court or federal court is when they pick their senator or their president,” he continued.
Biden has previously described questions about his position on court-packing as a distraction, suggesting that “the moment I answer that question, the headline in every one of your papers will be on the answer to that question.”
Last week, Biden appeared to snap when a reporter in Las Vegas suggested that “voters deserve to know” his position on court-packing.
“No, they don’t,” an irritated Biden shot back. “I’m not gonna play [Trump’s] game. He’d love me to talk about, and I’ve already said something on court-packing, he’d love that to be the discussion instead of what he’s doing now.”