A litmus test for 2020 Democratic Presidential candidates has become the issue of court packing. As 2016 Republican Presidential candidate and Florida Senator Marco Rubio pointed out in a recent op-ed:
Court packing is quickly becoming a litmus test for 2020 Democratic candidates as this ugly, winner-take-all rhetoric gains prominence in progressive circles.
Our nation may not be on the brink of civil war or dissolution, but we are suffering a crisis of confidence and we cannot withstand further erosion of trust in one another and our institutions. The rhetoric used by some of my Democratic colleagues that suggests our institutions are increasingly unable to resolve modern society’s conflicts is dangerous.
Rubio laid out the history of court packing and quoted a number of famous Democrats and liberals against court packing. Another interesting point of Rubio’s article is how President Franklin Delano Roosevelt framed the issue when he tried court packing.
“I want – as all Americans want – an independent judiciary as proposed by the framers of the Constitution,” President Franklin D. Roosevelt explained in a fireside chat 82 years ago. While his language was unifying, FDR’s proposal was a transparent attempt to expand the nation’s highest court so he could appoint additional justices who would not stand in the way of his ambitious political agenda.
The modern incarnation of court-packers shares FDR’s goals, though they are less unifying in their language. Proponents of a Democratic-led court-packing scheme foresee an impending “crisis” – one that they use to justify their highly partisan tactics.
Ashley Varner of the Freedom Foundation spells out what those Democrats are looking for and it is not to change the “philosophy of the court but rather to change the outcome of elections:
The list of cases that those on the left believe the Supreme Court has decided incorrectly – though not necessarily unconstitutionally, since their concern for the Constitution is roughly nil – is quite lengthy. Citizens United v. the Federal Election Commission, a case that protected free speech rights in the political system, would be in the crosshairs.
But even more pressing, from the point of view of those on the left, is the need to overturn the Janus v. AFSCME decision, in which the court ruled last summer that mandatory union dues or so-called “agency fees” were a violation of government employees’ First Amendment rights.
Those union political funds are used to support Democrat politicians. Along with HR 1, court packing is another example of Democrat efforts to alter the way elections are run or nullify election outcomes, for their benefit. Democrats care less about the American people than they do about their own jobs and power.