Skip to main content
We may receive compensation from affiliate partners for some links on this site. Read our full Disclosure here.

Democrats Renew Attempts to Pack the Supreme Court

Congressional Democrats Tuesday reintroduced legislation to pack the U.S. Supreme Court.

Democrats wish to add four additional seats to the high court and establish a 13-Justice bench.

“Today, Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Representatives Jerrold Nadler (NY-12), Hank Johnson (GA-04), Cori Bush (MO-01), and Adam Schiff (CA-30) announced the reintroduction of the Judiciary Act of 2023, legislation that would expand the Supreme Court by adding four seats to create a 13-Justice bench. Lawmakers were joined in front of the steps of the Supreme Court by leaders from national advocacy groups, including Planned Parenthood Federation of America Senior Vice President of Policy, Campaigns, and Advocacy Jacqueline AyersNARAL Pro-Choice America President Mini Timmaraju, League of Conservation Voters’ Senior Director of Judiciary & Democracy Doug Lindner, and Demand Justice Executive Director Brian Fallon,” Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) said in a press release.

“When something is broken, we don’t agonize—we organize to fix it. We must pass my Judiciary Act to add four justices to repair the broken Supreme Court,” Markey tweeted with a video of the Democrat-held press conference.

Cont. from Markey’s press release:

Congress can determine the size of the Supreme Court; it has already added and removed seats on the Court seven times throughout its history. At a time when the American people’s confidence in the nation’s highest court has fallen to a record low and Congressional Republicans have already employed their far-right judicial playbook by disregarding norms and precedent in the confirmations process, Congress must take action by once again expanding the Court.

“Republicans have hijacked the confirmation process and stolen the Supreme Court majority—all to appeal to far-right judicial activists who for years have wanted to wield the gavel to roll back fundamental rights,” said Senator Markey. “Each scandal uncovered, each norm broken, each precedent-shattering ruling delivered is a reminder that we must restore justice and balance to the rogue, radical Supreme Court. It is time we expand the Court.”

“It’s easy to take for granted that the number of justices on the Supreme Court must be nine,” said Representative Johnson. “But it is not written in the Constitution and has changed seven times over the course of our nation’s history. Thirteen justices would mean one justice per circuit court of appeals, consistent with how the number of justices was originally determined, so each justice can oversee one circuit. It’s time that we start thinking about the Supreme Court like we think about the rest of the federal government and consider whether and how its current composition allows it to do what we need it to do — efficiently and effectively administer justice and uphold the rule of law. I am pleased to join my colleagues, Senator Markey, Representative Schiff and Representative Bush in taking an important step in that direction today with the introduction of the Judiciary Act of 2023.”

“Republicans have been working to politicize the U.S. Supreme Court for forty years, with the help of dark money and the Federalist Society. With Donald Trump’s help, they stole two seats, ensuring an ultra-conservative Court that is drastically out of step with the American people,” said Senator Smith. “The Court is facing a legitimacy crisis of its own making after ethics scandals and a flagrant disregard for decades of legal precedent in the Dobbs case. Recent decisions have become dangerously unmoored from any reasonable principles of legal analysis and transparently serve conservative interests. Doing nothing is not an option – we need to abolish to the filibuster and reform and expand the Court. We have to pass The Judiciary Act to restore confidence in the U.S. Supreme Court and ensure it reflects our nation’s principles and core beliefs.”

“The Supreme Court is a cesspool of corruption devastating our communities. Because of the decisions made by an unethical and illegitimate majority, my constituents are unable to access abortion care, have weaker labor protections, are more vulnerable to voter suppression, and are subjected to a racist legal system,” said Representative Bush. “As lawmakers, we have a mandate to ensure our rights are not stripped away by bought-and-paid-for judges trying to implement a fascist agenda. I’m proud to lead on the reintroduction of the Judiciary Act, which would expand the Court and help us reclaim our democracy once and for all.”

“For far too long, Republicans have stacked the Supreme Court with ultra conservative justices in order to repeal reproductive freedom, constrain voting rights and weaken clean air rules,” said Representative Schiff. “Our nation’s highest court should not be used as a political tool for partisan purposes. That’s why we need to expand the Supreme Court to begin to restore trust, balance, and integrity in our nation’s highest court.”


Join the conversation!

Please share your thoughts about this article below. We value your opinions, and would love to see you add to the discussion!

Leave a comment
Thanks for sharing!