U.S. Supreme Court at night
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Court-packing silence could prove costly for Democrats

John Fund of National Review Online probes the potential political cost of Democrats’ stance on packing the U.S. Supreme Court next year.

Joe Biden is refusing to answer questions about whether he and his party would support packing the Supreme Court and ending the Senate filibuster. Indeed, on Friday a reporter said to him, “Sir I’ve got to ask you about packing the courts. I know that you said yesterday you aren’t going to answer the question until after the election. But this is the No. 1 thing that I’ve been asked about from viewers in the past couple of days. . . . Don’t the voters deserve to know where you stand?”

Biden replied, “No, they don’t deserve — I’m not going to play his [Trump’s] game.”

Biden seems to think that all he has to do to occupy the Oval Office in January is run out the clock and avoid angering his activist left-wing backers close to the election.

Court packing may not be the deciding issue in the presidential race. But it could be in close Senate races where several Democratic candidates are imitating Biden’s silence and being pummeled for it by effective GOP opponents.

In Maine, Democratic candidate Sara Gideon won’t rule out backing a court-packing plan. Colorado Democrat John Hickenlooper gave an embarrassing non-answer in his debate this past week with Republican senator Cory Gardner. Iowa Democrat Theresa Greenfield was once opposed to court packing but now can’t be pinned down on the issue in her race against GOP senator Joni Ernst.

The chances of Democrats winning a Senate majority for Democrats are up in the air because of court packing.

The irony is that their candidates are taking all this abuse over an idea that is unlikely to happen. Yet it may nonetheless cost them control of the Senate.

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...