April 13, 2021
WASHINGTON – At the Republican leadership press conference today, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) criticized the push by Democrats to expand the number of justices on the Supreme Court. Last week, Blunt slammed President Biden’s Executive Order creating a 36-member commission to look into ideas like packing the court with more justices and setting term limits for justices.
Following Are Blunt’s Remarks:
“So last week, the White House named a 36-member commission to look at the Supreme Court — clear that one of the objectives of that commission would be to talk about expanding the court.
“Justice Ginsburg had the view late in her life that nine was about the right number. Justice Breyer, just last week, said he thought nine was the right number. The Constitution doesn't say how many judges there should be. But for about 150 years, the number has been nine.
“This is a commission largely made up of academics, even as opposed to active lawyers. None of those academics appear to be a historian who'd look at the history of the court and what happens in the court. The other thing I don't like about the commission is I can't remember a time in the history of the country when a president appointed a commission to publicly review how the Supreme Court was doing its job.
“I think that gets very dangerously into one branch of the government getting beyond the balance that the Constitution so thoughtfully thought of. I think it's a bad idea. I think the goal of the commission is clearly to come back, and one of the options would be to enlarge the court.
“Eventually, if you enlarge the court and they put two or three judges on because Republicans were able to add three judges, and next time we're in control, we add three judges because Democrats are able to add three judges. Before you know it, the court may be as big as the 36-member commission or even the United States Senate.
“It is a bad road to go down. I think that we need to watch this very carefully as they begin to hold public hearings on how the Supreme Court is doing its job.”