Packing and unpacking the Supreme Court is nothing new. But why now? It's all in the details, as we discover.
Steve jumps back into history and into the Judiciary Act of 1801. Passed by Congress and signed into law during a lame-duck legislative session after the electoral defeat of John Adams, the nation’s second president, and his Federalist party. The law doubled the number of circuits from three to six, and created 16 circuit court judgeships to staff them. It was, in effect, a post-election circuit court-packing plan, and the incoming Jeffersonian Republicans saw it as such.
From a legal perspective, changing the number of justices on the Supreme Court is an easy thing to do. All that it takes is a majority in both houses of Congress to pass legislation to that effect, and the president’s signature (or a veto override, if the president resists).
It has been done seven times in the nation’s history, each time for partisan political purposes. Although the practice has come to be known as “court-packing,” Congress has twice lowered the number of justices to deprive a rival party of appointments to the high court. As a brief historical review reveals, the politics of court-packing, and its unpacking, is literally as old as the republic itself.
And so much more, including legal questions from The Blitz listeners.
Recorded at Channel 511, a production of 511 South High Media LLC.
Stephen E. Palmer, Esq. has been practicing criminal defense almost exclusively since 1995. He has represented people in federal, state, and local courts in Ohio and elsewhere.
Though he focuses on all areas of criminal defense, he particularly enjoys complex cases in state and federal courts.
He has unique experience handling and assembling top defense teams of attorneys and experts in cases involving allegations of child abuse (false sexual allegations, false physical abuse allegations), complex scientific cases involving allegations of DUI and vehicle homicide cases with blood alcohol tests, and any other criminal cases that demand jury trial experience.
Steve has unique experience handling numerous high publicity cases that have garnered national attention.