President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court commission discussed the possibility of packing the court and adding term limits to justices during its second public meeting held on Wednesday.
The commission is expected to release its recommendations later this year for review.
The controversial commission has already been strongly criticized by conservatives who see it as a power play to add liberal influence to the already increasingly partisan Supreme Court.
Justice Term Limits
According to The Washington Times, Ilan Wurman, a law professor at Arizona State University, suggested that an 18-year term limit for the justices would be suitable.
“The proposal for 18-year, staggered term limits, fixing the court at nine justices, strikes me as the most plausible of all available reforms.
“It would require a constitutional amendment, but such an amendment is likely to have at least some support across all major political parties,” Mr. Wurman said.
Additional Justices (AKA Court Packing)
The Washington Times also quoted Noah Feldman, a Harvard University law professor, on the issue of adding additional justices to the Supreme Court.
“We collectively have much more to gain by preserving the institutional legitimacy of the Supreme Court than by breaking it,” Feldman said.
However, some progressives realize the academic group leading the commission may not make the progress it desires.
“I think the deference to academics in terms of the makeup of this commission combined with the lack of authority to make actual policy recommendations makes this commission rather toothless,” said Brian Fallon, executive director of Demand Justice, a progressive group advocating for court reform, according to The Hill.
“So I don’t think that this commission is going to be the vehicle for facilitating any of the bold reforms that we think are needed for the federal judiciary,” he said.
“In its design, I think it’s been set up to come up well short of endorsing anything bold or meaningful,” he added.
The commission meets again later in July, offering yet another opportunity to hear proposals concerning the future possibilities of the Supreme Court.