CNN Court packing Harry Reid Intelwars Supreme Court

Harry Reid warns Democrats against packing Supreme Court with liberal justices: ‘Be very, very careful’

Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has a warning for Democrats eager to pack the Supreme Court with ideologically liberal justices.

Reid’s comments came one day after President Joe Biden signed an executive order forming a commission to study expanding the Supreme Court.

What did Reid say?

Reid, who served two decades in the Senate before retiring in 2017, told CNN on Saturday that packing the Supreme Court, which Democrats want to do, could ultimately backfire.

In fact, Reid said Democrats need to be “very, very careful” making such threats.

“I have no problem with the commission, but I think that the commission is going to come back and disappoint a lot of people because I think they’re going to come back and say, ‘We should just kind of leave it alone,'” Reid said.

“I think it would be inappropriate at this time after that long history we’ve had in the country to have term limits for judges,” Reid continued.

“I think that we better be very, very careful in saying that we need to expand the Supreme Court. I think we better be very, very, careful,” he added.

Reid, who was speaking with CNN host Jim Acosta about the Senate filibuster, went on to predict “the filibuster is on its way out. It’s not a question of ‘if’, but ‘when.'”

What is the background?

Following Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death last fall, and then-President Donald Trump’s promise to fill the Supreme Court vacancy with yet another conservative jurist, Democrats began openly advocating for court packing under the guise of “reform” and “balance.”

At the time, then-presidential candidate Joe Biden dodged the issue, but finally promised to establish a commission of legal experts to consider the implications of expanding the court. Biden made good on that promise last week.

The White House said in a statement:

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 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.

However, Supreme Court justices themselves are vocally against court packing.

Justice Stephen Breyer, who has refused to buckle under pressure from progressives to retire, denounced court packing while speaking at Harvard Law School last week.

“Structural alteration motivated by the perception of political influence can only feed that latter perception, further eroding that trust,” Breyer said.

Ginsburg also rejected court packing in an interview several years prior to her passing.

“[I]f anything would make the court appear partisan then it would be [court packing], one side saying, ‘When we’re in power we’re going to enlarge the number of judges so we’ll have more people who will vote the way we want them to,'” Ginsburg said.

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Ben Shapiro hits AOC with history lesson after she lashes out over Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation

Democrats exploded in anger Monday after Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed to the Supreme Court and then sworn in as the court’s newest associate justice. They promised retaliation and blamed Republicans for escalating tribalism in American politics.

But conservative commentator and lawyer Ben Shapiro was quick to provide Democrats with a history lesson.

What did Democrats say?

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) said expanding the Supreme Court and packing it with liberal justices is necessary because such measures will fix what she called a “broken system.”

“Remember that Republicans have lost 6 of the last 7 popular votes, but have appointed 6 of the last 9 justices,” Omar claimed. “By expanding the court we fix this broken system and have the court better represent the values of the American people.”

Meanwhile, Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) said Democrats should not stop at the Supreme Court — he said Democrats should pack the entire federal judiciary with liberal justices.

Enter Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), who claimed that Republicans are “bulldozing” their agenda into reality.

“Expand the court,” Ocasio-Cortez said immediately after the Senate confirmed Barrett.

“Republicans do this because they don’t believe Dems have the stones to play hardball like they do. And for a long time they’ve been correct. But do not let them bully the public into thinking their bulldozing is normal but a response isn’t. There is a legal process for expansion,” she added.

What’s the truth?

As Shapiro was quick to point out, Democrats began political escalation — particularly in the Senate — years ago, and those chickens are now coming home to roost.

According to Shapiro, Democrats are responsible for the political environment that has resulted in the confirmation of judges like Barrett.

“The funniest part about this tweet is that Democrats were first to destroy judicial candidates for mere interpretational disagreement, the first to use the filibuster against judges, and the first to nuke the filibuster against judges…but she thinks the Republicans started it,” Shpairo wrote in response to Ocasio-Cortez.

Indeed, Senate Democrats have spent decades tearing down conservative-leaning judges nominated to the federal judiciary.

The climax of such behavior happened in the fall of 2018 during Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation, when Democrats pushed unsubstantiated claims that he was a serial sexual assaulter.

Meanwhile, as the Heritage Foundation explains, the filibuster, implemented in the early 1800s, was originally meant for legislative purposes, but Democrats were the first to invoke the filibuster in 2003 against nearly one dozen federal judicial nominees appointed by then-President George W. Bush.

And who could forget when, in 2013, then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) forever changed the landscape of the Senate by invoking the so-called “nuclear option” to lower the vote-threshold required to approve federal judges. Democrats did this in retaliation against Senate Republicans — who at the time were in the minority in the Senate — for taking a play from the Democratic playbook and using the filibuster to block many of then-President Barack Obama’s executive nominees.

Previously, judges and executive nominees needed three-fifths approval, or 60 votes in the Senate, to end debate on their confirmation. But because Democrats changed the rules, only a simple majority, or 51 votes, is required to end debate on confirmation.

One year later, Democrats confirmed 89 federal judges using the re-written rules.

After Democrats changed the rules, then-Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell left Democrats with a sobering warning, “You’ll regret this — and you may regret this a lot sooner than you think.”

Turns out, McConnell was right.