Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, candidates for the Geographic Senate Democrats – both locked in close-running competitions that have attracted national attention – have differing views on the issue of court packaging.
Ossoff challenges Republican Senate David Perdue while Warnock confronts the state’s other GOP senator, Kelly Loeffler. If Democrats take both seats, they will take control of the House of Commons and elected Vice President Kamala Harris will cast a tie.
GOP INVESTIGATIONS GEORGIA SENATE RUNS AS A FIREWALL AGAINST THE BIDEN AGENDA
One important issue that can rest in competitions is whether the Supreme Court can be expanded from nine judges. This has gained momentum in recent years, particularly as President Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Barrett was confirmed during the early vote, angering Democrats.
In 1937, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt unsuccessfully attempted to pack the court with further justice, seeking to enforce it through parts of his New Constitution that the Supreme Court found unconstitutional.
Democrats have accused Republicans of stealing Supreme Court seats and claiming that they themselves pursued their own version of “court packaging”. Consequently, several Democrats and activists have called President-elect Joe Biden to try to provide the court with more justice.
Ossoff opposed this move.
“We should not expand the Supreme Court just because a judiciary with whom we disagree with politics can be confirmed,” Classic City News said in a September interview.
Perdue’s campaign prompted Ossoff to go further and support a constitutional amendment limiting the number of judges to nine. So far, Ossoff has not expressed support for such a proposal.
Although Warnock did not support court packaging, he did not explicitly oppose it – instead he said he would be “arrogant” if he considered the case.
“I think I’m arrogant to go further down this path – I’m talking about what happens to the courts,” Warnock said earlier this month. “I hope the people of Georgia look at my life, look at my record, and it is a great honor for me to represent them in the United States Senate.”
The opposition of some more Democrats is killing the chance to get a court-packing measure through Congress.
Ossoff next to Sens. Kyrsten dating in Sinema, D-Ariz. And Joe Manchin, DW.Va., voiced opposition by filing it in court.
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After repeatedly avoiding questions about whether he supports court packaging, then-candidate Biden said in October he would set up a committee to “examine” judicial reform.
“If elected, I’m going to put together a national committee, a bipartisan committee made up of scholars, constitutional scholars, Democrats, Republicans, Liberals, Conservatives,” he said in an interview. “I ask them to come back to me in 180 days with recommendations for reform of the judiciary, because it will upset me.”
Fox News Evie Fordham and Sam Dorman contributed to this report.