I am writing in response to a letter titled “Beware of Packing the Supreme Court” (WNJ 4/17/21). I am not writing to advocate for expanding the Supreme Court, but I feel some of the facts about recent Supreme Court nominations are lacking. Specifically, the writer claims that the Democrats want to increase the size of the Court. He notes that Trump was able to nominate three justices to the Supreme Court, which doesn’t sit well with the Democrats.
My comment is this – the only reason that Trump was able to appoint three justices to the Court is because of Mitch McConnell, whose actions as the Senate Majority Leader are nothing short of hypocritical. First, he refused to consider Obama’s nominee to the court, claiming that such an appointment in an election year wasn’t appropriate, despite the fact that the election was eight months away.
However, he did not hesitate to consider, and pushed for, the approval of Trump’s final nominee just weeks prior to the election, after early voting had already begun. Were it not for these actions, two of the last three Supreme Court justices would have been appointed by Democratic presidents. Given these facts, is it any reason why the current makeup of the court does not sit well with Democrats?
Perhaps, in the future, there should be some kind of rule or law that would establish a standard timeline for things that can and cannot be done in the months leading up to an election by Congress and/or the president. For example, no vacancies in the Supreme Court should be filled within three or four months prior to an election. Vacancies that occur prior to that time must be filled by the sitting president and acted upon by the Senate. Vacancies within that time should be filled by the next-term president. That way, it becomes less of a partisan issue.
Our nation has become far too divided between left and right, Democrat and Republican. It’s time we stopped attacking one another and sought solutions that are truly for the good of all.