Biden’s Supreme Court Commission
The White House released a statement in early April that President Joe Biden signed an executive order to create the Commission on the Supreme Court, to re-evaluate the Court’s role within today’s society.
In a previous article with the RNHA, we had noted that if it were to be that the Democrats were able to achieve majority status in the Congress that the Supreme Court reform was likely to follow. This frustration over the Supreme Court largely increased following the appointment of Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court by President Donald Trump in October of 2020, to replace the late Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
According to the White House, legal scholars, former federal judges, experienced Supreme Court litigators, as well as “advocates for the reform of democratic institutions and of the administration of justice” compose the commission. The White House statement noted subject areas of great interest to the Commission: an examination of judicial reforms, tenure, and the number of Supreme Court justices, the selection process of cases by the Court, as well the Court’s judicial ethics.
Following its establishment, the Commission will conclude its 180-day research by providing a report of its findings and recommendations to President Biden. The White House statement on this Commission of 36 says that there will be a diverse representation of views and philosophy, to provide as many opinions on the issue of the Supreme Court as possible. Some views included are living Constitutionalism, originalism, Constitutional law, election law, statutory interpretation, criminal law and procedure, prison law, education law, as well as many other areas.
Until the Commission completes its investigation on the Supreme Court over the next 180 days all we can do is speculate. Recent discussions on the subject include18-year term limits for justices rather than the current lifetime appointments, court expansion, and ways to de-polarize the appointment of Supreme Court justices.
Due to the recent intrigue on the subject of our nation’s Judicial Branch, Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer said,
“Authority, like the rule of law, depends on trust, a trust that the court is guided by legal principle, not politics. Structural alteration motivated by the perception of political influence can only feed that perception, further eroding that trust.”
The Founding Fathers intended the Supreme Court to be a political body, but one that ensured that all laws hold the Consitution of the United States of America. Only time will tell how the Commission’s finding will affect the Supreme Court and the Americans’ faith in it.