Joe Biden says that if elected, he will create a bipartisan commission to study overhauling the nation's court system, which is "getting out of whack." The former Vice President's announcement is effectively a punt over whether he will pack the Supreme Court following the expected confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
In comments to "60 Minutes," Biden says the commission would consider over six months "a number of alternatives that go well beyond packing."
Biden still won’t take a position on court packing. He wants to appoint a commission to study it, which is a typical Washington, DC punt. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a weaker leader than Joe Biden. https://t.co/hWV3TcbAlC— Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) October 22, 2020
As Bloomberg noted on Wednesday, alternatives to packing the court include:
Jurisdiction stripping - making laws which could limit the Supreme Court from reviewing them, as well as stripping lower courts of the ability to review legislation. The move could also "confine legal challenges to geographic regions where courts are generally sympathetic."
Supermajority requirement - requiring that some cases achieve a two-thirds vote or even unanimity, as opposed to simple majority.
Balanced Bench - A proposal in which the US Supreme Court would start with 10 justices; five chosen by Democrats and five by Republicans, with lifetime appointments.
Lottery System - Each judge on federal appeals courts would be appointed as an associate justice on the Supreme Court. Every two weeks, a panel of nine justices would be randomly selected from that pool to hear cases.