Democrats advocating legislation to expand the judiciary to 13 members from the traditional nine will face “a lot of pushback,” Fox News chief legal correspondent and “Fox News @ Night” host Shannon Bream said Wednesday.
“Listen, it [changing the size of the Court] has not been done since 1869,” Bream told “Fox News Primetime” host Lawrence Jones. “The Constitution does not outline exactly how many justices there have to be at any one time. The Court started with six, and the theory has always been that the Founders thought it wouldn’t be used to decide really tough questions on a regular basis.”
The House bill is sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., and freshman Rep. Mondaire Jones, D-N.Y., The Senate legislation is sponsored by Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass. The Intercept first reported on the legislation Wednesday.
The bill comes just days after liberal judiciary Justice Stephen Breyer warned during a lecture at Harvard Law School that politically-driven changes to the Supreme Court risked damaging the rule of law in the United States. Democrats control the House and maintain the slimmest possible margin in the Senate with Vice President Kamala Harris able to break tie votes in the Senate.
“When FDR talked about this, about packing the courts to get his [New Deal] policies upheld and put through, it did not go well for him,” Bream reminded viewers. “I think the American public is going to have a lot of questions.
“The late Justice [Ruth Bader] Ginsburg said, ‘Nine is a great number, I don’t think we should mess with it,’ so I think there’s going to be a lot of pushback along a number of fronts if they move forward with this.”