Last updated on October 16, 2020
The Biden/Harris campaign must not answer any court-packing questions. Their answer should always be they will do what they were elected to do. The question is GOP court-packing with incompetent judges.
Disregard calls to address court-packing
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Even with a Senate majority led by Harry Reid during the Obama administration, Mitch McConnell continuously blocked Obama's judicial appointments. McConnell continued the blockade even during his ascent as the majority leader.
The GOP-controlled Senate is on track this year to confirm the fewest judges since 1969, a dramatic escalation of the long-running partisan feud over the ideological makeup of federal courts.
The standoff, if it continues through the 2016 elections as expected, could diminish the stamp that President Barack Obama leaves on the judiciary — a less conspicuous but critical part of his legacy. Practically, the makeup of lower-level courts could directly affect a number of Obama’s policies expected to face legal challenges from conservatives.
Republicans appear willing to absorb criticism that they’re interfering with the prerogative of a president to pick his nominees in the hope that the GOP can get its own judges installed in 2017, with one of their own in the White House. In the meantime, federal courts could be left with dozens of unfilled vacancies. More than two dozen federal courts have declared “ judicial emergencies” because of excessive caseloads caused by vacancies.
Senate Democrats infuriated Republicans in November 2013 by scrapping the 60-vote filibuster rule for judicial nominations — a change Obama and then-Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) used to usher through 96 judicial nominations.
That gush has slowed to a trickle since Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) became majority leader in January: When the Senate returns after the Fourth of July recess, the chamber will vote to confirm its first circuit court nominee of the year, Kara Stoll.
Biden/Harris owes no explanations to a derelict media. They need to let Americans know they will make whatever changes are necessary to give them a better life.
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