U.S. Constitution on parchment
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Ginsburg’s death places the Constitution on the ballot

John Daniel Davidson of the Federalist ponders the electoral significance of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death.

It didn’t take long after Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death for the left to trot out arguments for packing the Supreme Court.

“If the Democrats are unable to block Trump’s nominee, there is but one choice should Joe Biden win the White House and the Democrats take back a majority in the Senate: pack the Supreme Court,” argued an article at The Nation. “If McConnell pushes through a nominee, President Biden should pack the court,” ran a headline at the Washington Post.

The New York Times’ Michelle Goldberg went further, arguing not only that Democrats should pack the court if Republicans manage to fill Ginsburg’s now-vacant seat, but that if they even try, “Outraged people should take to the streets en masse” in an effort to grind the Senate to a halt through civic unrest.

It’s not just hysterical columnists who are calling for a court-packing scheme if Biden wins. House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler endorsed the idea in a tweet on Saturday, as did former Obama Attorney General Eric Holder, Rep. Joe Kennedy III, and a host of other Democratic elected officials. …

… This isn’t just empty rhetoric, they mean it. And packing the court with at least two additional seats—one for Ginsburg and one for Merrick Garland, whom Democrats feel is entitled to a seat simply because President Obama nominated him—is just the beginning of what Democrats will try to do if Biden wins the election. Schemes are now afoot to pack the court, abolish the Senate filibuster, and grant statehood to Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.

What all these moves have in common is that they would erode the constitutional mechanisms in place that Democrats see as impediments to their complete control over the levers of government power.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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