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Court Packing, Democrats increasingly Authoritarian Turn

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  • Court Packing, Democrats increasingly Authoritarian Turn

    If democrats win, get ready for what may be the most authoritarian government since FDR put the Japanese into concentration camps.

    Source: https://www.vox.com/2018/7/2/17513520/court-packing-explained-fdr-roosevelt-new-deal-democrats-supreme-court


    It’s not hard to see why political scientists taking a more international view would see court-packing as, on its face, a threat to democratic institutions. As Huq and Ginsburg note, court-packing is a frequently used tool in the toolkit of would-be authoritarians.

    To give a few examples:

    • In 1946-47, Argentina’s populist president and former military coup conspirator Juan Perón successfully impeached four out of the country’s five Supreme Court justices in a bid to consolidate power.
    • In 1989, Argentine President Carlos Menem, fearing Supreme Court opposition to his privatization schemes, expanded the court from five to nine members and packed it with sympathetic judges.
    • In 2004, Hugo Chávez’s allies in the National Assembly of Venezuela expanded the Supreme Court from 20 members to 32 and packed it with Chávez loyalists.
    • Among many other attempts to weaken the judiciary, Turkey’s authoritarian President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, then the prime minister, in 2010 pushed through a referendum increasing the Constitutional Court’s size from 11 to 17 and enabling him and his loyalists to fill the new vacancies.
    • In 2012, Juan Orlando Hernández, then the president of Honduras’s National Congress and today the increasingly dictatorial country’s right-wing president, conspired to sack four of the five Supreme Court justices and replace them with his allies.
    • As part of Viktor Orbán’s rise to power as Hungary’s dictator, in 2010 he and his Fidesz party amended the rules of Supreme Court appointment so that the opposition no longer had to assent to nominees; in 2011, they expanded the number of judges from 11 to 15; in 2012 and 2013, they expanded terms on the bench from nine to 12 years and eliminated the 70-year age limit previously in place. These moves, together, resulted in 11 out of 15 judges being Fidesz loyalists.
    • Poland’s authoritarian nationalist Law and Justice party in 2017 seized control over the Supreme Court by pushing legislation that gives the ruling party the ability to appoint new judges and the power to dismiss judges below a certain retirement age (which happens to disproportionately enable the dismissal of judges critical of the Law and Justice party). In the wake of massive public opposition, the president vetoed the legislation, only to accept a very similar bill months later. All this followed the party’s 2015 decision to not swear in judges appointed by their predecessors and to force a supermajority requirement on the court, effectively weakening it.

    The pattern is clear: Court-packing is what autocrats do as they begin to consolidate their power. And it’s been a particularly popular method in the past couple of decades. It’s not a thing of the past, and is currently used by the authoritarian backsliders (Orbán, the Law and Justice party, Erdoğan) that people who worry about Trump’s anti-democratic tendencies compare him to.

    © Copyright Original Source


  • #2
    Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post
    If democrats win, get ready for what may be the most authoritarian government since FDR put the Japanese into concentration camps.

    Source: https://www.vox.com/2018/7/2/17513520/court-packing-explained-fdr-roosevelt-new-deal-democrats-supreme-court


    It’s not hard to see why political scientists taking a more international view would see court-packing as, on its face, a threat to democratic institutions. As Huq and Ginsburg note, court-packing is a frequently used tool in the toolkit of would-be authoritarians.

    To give a few examples:

    • In 1946-47, Argentina’s populist president and former military coup conspirator Juan Perón successfully impeached four out of the country’s five Supreme Court justices in a bid to consolidate power.
    • In 1989, Argentine President Carlos Menem, fearing Supreme Court opposition to his privatization schemes, expanded the court from five to nine members and packed it with sympathetic judges.
    • In 2004, Hugo Chávez’s allies in the National Assembly of Venezuela expanded the Supreme Court from 20 members to 32 and packed it with Chávez loyalists.
    • Among many other attempts to weaken the judiciary, Turkey’s authoritarian President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, then the prime minister, in 2010 pushed through a referendum increasing the Constitutional Court’s size from 11 to 17 and enabling him and his loyalists to fill the new vacancies.
    • In 2012, Juan Orlando Hernández, then the president of Honduras’s National Congress and today the increasingly dictatorial country’s right-wing president, conspired to sack four of the five Supreme Court justices and replace them with his allies.
    • As part of Viktor Orbán’s rise to power as Hungary’s dictator, in 2010 he and his Fidesz party amended the rules of Supreme Court appointment so that the opposition no longer had to assent to nominees; in 2011, they expanded the number of judges from 11 to 15; in 2012 and 2013, they expanded terms on the bench from nine to 12 years and eliminated the 70-year age limit previously in place. These moves, together, resulted in 11 out of 15 judges being Fidesz loyalists.
    • Poland’s authoritarian nationalist Law and Justice party in 2017 seized control over the Supreme Court by pushing legislation that gives the ruling party the ability to appoint new judges and the power to dismiss judges below a certain retirement age (which happens to disproportionately enable the dismissal of judges critical of the Law and Justice party). In the wake of massive public opposition, the president vetoed the legislation, only to accept a very similar bill months later. All this followed the party’s 2015 decision to not swear in judges appointed by their predecessors and to force a supermajority requirement on the court, effectively weakening it.

    The pattern is clear: Court-packing is what autocrats do as they begin to consolidate their power. And it’s been a particularly popular method in the past couple of decades. It’s not a thing of the past, and is currently used by the authoritarian backsliders (Orbán, the Law and Justice party, Erdoğan) that people who worry about Trump’s anti-democratic tendencies compare him to.

    © Copyright Original Source

    Not just Court packing (something that Biden has refused to promise not to do), but also term/age limits so they can force out folks like Clarence Thomas.

    I'm always still in trouble again

    "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
    "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

    Comment


    • #3
      Isn't Trump court packing too? Both sides do it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Sparko View Post
        Isn't Trump court packing too? Both sides do it.
        It would be hard to say that the president appointing a vacancy that appeared during his term is court packing.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Sparko View Post
          Isn't Trump court packing too? Both sides do it.
          Court packing is what FDR threatened to do in order to overcome a Supreme Court that had been ruling key parts of his New Deal unconstitutional. His plan was to simply increase the number of SCOTUS justices (which he would of course pick) until the majority agreed with him.



          I'm always still in trouble again

          "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
          "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post
            If democrats win, get ready for what may be the most authoritarian government since FDR put the Japanese into concentration camps.

            Source: https://www.vox.com/2018/7/2/17513520/court-packing-explained-fdr-roosevelt-new-deal-democrats-supreme-court


            It’s not hard to see why political scientists taking a more international view would see court-packing as, on its face, a threat to democratic institutions. As Huq and Ginsburg note, court-packing is a frequently used tool in the toolkit of would-be authoritarians.

            To give a few examples:

            • In 1946-47, Argentina’s populist president and former military coup conspirator Juan Perón successfully impeached four out of the country’s five Supreme Court justices in a bid to consolidate power.
            • In 1989, Argentine President Carlos Menem, fearing Supreme Court opposition to his privatization schemes, expanded the court from five to nine members and packed it with sympathetic judges.
            • In 2004, Hugo Chávez’s allies in the National Assembly of Venezuela expanded the Supreme Court from 20 members to 32 and packed it with Chávez loyalists.
            • Among many other attempts to weaken the judiciary, Turkey’s authoritarian President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, then the prime minister, in 2010 pushed through a referendum increasing the Constitutional Court’s size from 11 to 17 and enabling him and his loyalists to fill the new vacancies.
            • In 2012, Juan Orlando Hernández, then the president of Honduras’s National Congress and today the increasingly dictatorial country’s right-wing president, conspired to sack four of the five Supreme Court justices and replace them with his allies.
            • As part of Viktor Orbán’s rise to power as Hungary’s dictator, in 2010 he and his Fidesz party amended the rules of Supreme Court appointment so that the opposition no longer had to assent to nominees; in 2011, they expanded the number of judges from 11 to 15; in 2012 and 2013, they expanded terms on the bench from nine to 12 years and eliminated the 70-year age limit previously in place. These moves, together, resulted in 11 out of 15 judges being Fidesz loyalists.
            • Poland’s authoritarian nationalist Law and Justice party in 2017 seized control over the Supreme Court by pushing legislation that gives the ruling party the ability to appoint new judges and the power to dismiss judges below a certain retirement age (which happens to disproportionately enable the dismissal of judges critical of the Law and Justice party). In the wake of massive public opposition, the president vetoed the legislation, only to accept a very similar bill months later. All this followed the party’s 2015 decision to not swear in judges appointed by their predecessors and to force a supermajority requirement on the court, effectively weakening it.

            The pattern is clear: Court-packing is what autocrats do as they begin to consolidate their power. And it’s been a particularly popular method in the past couple of decades. It’s not a thing of the past, and is currently used by the authoritarian backsliders (Orbán, the Law and Justice party, Erdoğan) that people who worry about Trump’s anti-democratic tendencies compare him to.

            © Copyright Original Source

            Adding justices to the SCOTUS does not remotely qualify as 'court packing', with all the implications of that practice.

            There is zero basis to claim or think that a Democratic presidency would be any more authoritarian than Trump's.
            America - too good to let the conservatives drag it back to 1950.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Electric Skeptic View Post
              Adding justices to the SCOTUS does not remotely qualify as 'court packing', with all the implications of that practice.

              There is zero basis to claim or think that a Democratic presidency would be any more authoritarian than Trump's.
              I can't believe you typed that with a straight face.

              The Democrats' Case for Court Packing - The Atlantic The Atlantic

              End the Filibuster? Pack the Court? The Left Is Pushing Biden NY Times

              Opinion | No, the Democrats Won't Pack the Court - POLITICO Politico

              Will Democrats attempt to pack the Supreme Court again ... The Hill

              Supreme Court packing: Where 2020 Democrats stand ... Washington Post

              Will Democrats Pack The Supreme Court In Response To A ... NPR

              If Democrats win in November, should they pack the Supreme ... Harvard Law Today

              Democrats Split Over The Question Of 'Court Packing' | Time Time

              Democrats Really Might Try to Pack the Courts – Mother Jones Mother Jones

              Let's Think About Court-Packing : Democracy Journal Democracy Journal








              Comment


              • #8
                I have no time to read a dozen articles someone claims show something.

                Point out where those articles show that Democrats want to pack the Supreme Court on the way to an increasingly authoritarian America.
                America - too good to let the conservatives drag it back to 1950.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Electric Skeptic View Post
                  I have no time to read a dozen articles someone claims show something.

                  Point out where those articles show that Democrats want to pack the Supreme Court on the way to an increasingly authoritarian America.
                  You don't have to read them. Your claim was that adding seats wasn't court packing. I gave you a dozen contemporary articles, all calling it court packing.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post

                    It would be hard to say that the president appointing a vacancy that appeared during his term is court packing.
                    How else would anyone "pack" a court? There has to be a vacancy to fill.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Sparko View Post

                      How else would anyone "pack" a court? There has to be a vacancy to fill.
                      Adding extra vacancies purely for the purpose of filling them with judges you expect to favor your political party, which is what democrats are wanting to do.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                        Isn't Trump court packing too? Both sides do it.
                        The difference is that the Democrats are threatening to add more add enough seats on SCOTUS to get a majority of their type of activist reading into the constitution and laws what they want to on the supreme court. All Trump is doing is filling already vacant seats with Justices who will rule based on the clear reading of the Constitution and Laws.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Sparko View Post

                          How else would anyone "pack" a court? There has to be a vacancy to fill.
                          "Court packing" refers to the practice of arbitrarily expanding the number of Supreme Court justices in order to artificially create vacancies and then "pack" the court with judges who are likely to rule in the president's favor. So suppose Biden wins and inherits a Supreme Court with a conservative majority who is likely to rule against him. No problem, just keep adding justices until he has a liberal majority. It's rather insidious.
                          Some may call me foolish, and some may call me odd
                          But I'd rather be a fool in the eyes of man
                          Than a fool in the eyes of God


                          From "Fools Gold" by Petra

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by CivilDiscourse View Post

                            Adding extra vacancies purely for the purpose of filling them with judges you expect to favor your political party, which is what democrats are wanting to do.
                            oh. yeah that's bad.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mountain Man View Post
                              "Court packing" refers to the practice of arbitrarily expanding the number of Supreme Court justices in order to artificially create vacancies and then "pack" the court with judges who are likely to rule in the president's favor. So suppose Biden wins and inherits a Supreme Court with a conservative majority who is likely to rule against him. No problem, just keep adding justices until he has a liberal majority. It's rather insidious.
                              And since they're willing to play this dirty with SCOTUS, all bets are off the table with their election actions and outcome.
                              Last edited by seanD; 10-01-2020, 05:16 PM.
                              "I was the CIA director. We lied, we cheated, we stole, it was like... we had entire training courses. It reminds you of the glory of the American experiment." - Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State (source).

                              Comment

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