The makeup of this Supreme Court is no accident. Republicans and far-right groups like the Federalist Society have spent decades working to take over the judiciary in an attempt to cement extremism on the bench, even going so far as to steal two Supreme Court seats during the Trump administration—first by denying Merrick Garland a fair hearing and vote, and then by hypocritically ramming through Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation while Americans were casting votes to choose the next president and determine the composition of the Senate.
The Constitution allows Congress to change the number of justices, and lawmakers have done so seven times throughout American history. Adding seats to the court is a practical, proportional response that would allow us to stop the harm being done and restore its balance and integrity.
Democrats have reintroduced the Judiciary Act of 2023, legislation that would expand the Supreme Court by adding four seats to create a 13-justice bench. “The Supreme Court is a cesspool of corruption devastating our communities. Because of the decisions made by an unethical and illegitimate majority, my constituents are unable to access abortion care, have weaker labor protections, are more vulnerable to voter suppression, and are subjected to a racist legal system,” said Rep. Cori Bush of Mississippi in a statement. “As lawmakers, we have a mandate to ensure our rights are not stripped away by bought-and-paid-for judges trying to implement a fascist agenda.”
The Judiciary Act was first introduced in 2021. Now, despite the fact that there are fewer Democrats in Congress than there were last session, the Judiciary Act has more supporters today than it ever has before.
“To address the injustice of stolen seats and broken trust, we must expand the number of justices on the Supreme Court and confirm fair-minded jurists committed to equal justice for all. The current situation requires congressional intervention,” explains Kimberly Humphrey, legal director of Alliance for Justice, in a statement. “Court expansion is not simply about a rebuff of bad decisions; it is necessary to restore fairness, integrity and respect for the rule of law at the pinnacle of our justice system. The nation’s highest court has been captured and rigged by radical extremists that flaunt a commitment to their partisan agenda with extreme rulings departing from long-standing precedent and repeated inaction after several new bombshell allegations of ethics violations.”
Humphrey is right. In the face of an unaccountable, unethical majority on the Supreme Court determined to strip Americans of our freedoms, we need Congress to deliver judicial reforms necessary to protect our democracy. That starts with expanding the court.
Sign the petition: Congress must expand the Supreme Court.