Senate Republicans’ move to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court in an election year is “not constitutional.”
Asked whether he would consider adding justices to the Supreme Court if elected, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden claimed Senate Republicans’ move to install Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the vacant seat less than a month before Election Day was “not constitutional.”
“Look, the only court packing is going on right now,” Biden told reporters Oct. 10. “It’s going on with the Republicans packing the court now. It’s not constitutional what they’re doing.”
The rush to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died in September, is a departure from the GOP’s position in 2016, when the Republican-led Senate blocked President Barack Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland months before that year’s election.
Biden, the former vice president who served two terms with Obama, has argued that the winner of the Nov. 3 presidential election should pick the next nominee.
The term “court packing” — a phrase that invokes President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1937 proposal to expand the size of the Supreme Court — means increasing the number of justices on the court. Doing that would require legislation, and Biden has not said whether he’d consider it as president. But Republicans are not currently pursuing that.
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