Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said it would be a good idea to pass a constitutional amendment that would secure nine justices on the Supreme Court.
In an interview with the Washington Examiner, the Texas Republican and author of One Vote Away: How a Single Supreme Court Seat Can Change History, blasted Democratic threats to expand the Supreme Court and end the filibuster. Cruz said he would support either a legislative effort or a constitutional amendment solidifying the number of justices on the high court.
“I think that’s a good idea. The number of justices is not set in the Constitution. It’s set by Congress,” Cruz said, noting that the number of justices has varied over time. “We’ve had the number nine for 150 years. It is a number that works well, that provides stability and helps insulate the court from being overly politicized.”
Senate Republicans are pushing forward to confirm President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, whom Cruz met with at the Capitol on Tuesday. Republicans control 53 seats in the Senate and would not have room for more than three defections within their party should a nominee be voted on and all Democrats resist the president’s selection. Vice President Mike Pence has the power to break a tied vote.
Cruz told the Washington Examiner that he is confident the Senate will vote to confirm Barrett before the general election on Nov. 3. He also encouraged his Democratic colleagues to meet with Barrett, saying her demeanor and temperament were impressive in person.
Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he was not going to meet with Barrett because she’s part of an “illegitimate process,” and “determined to get rid of the Affordable Care Act.”
“Schumer is a hard partisan. He’s going to be a no, no matter what she says or does. He’s not considering her on the merits. He is engaged in political warfare,” Cruz said.
Cruz said he warned Barrett that Democrats are preparing for a contentious confirmation process.
“I joked with her, although it’s not really a joke, that Democrats are right now trying to find someone in third grade who had something mean to say about her,” Cruz said.
Democrats, including presidential nominee Joe Biden, have demanded Trump wait until there is a winner in the November election to nominate a justice to the court. Some have even suggested that if Republicans push through a nominee and the Democrats take control of Congress in November, they will vote to expand the Supreme Court or end the legislative filibuster.
Cruz said Democratic threats to take those actions are “deadly serious.”
“If the Democrats prevail on Election Day, and if we wake up in January with Biden, Schumer, and Pelosi controlling the federal government, I think the odds that Democrats end the filibuster are 100%. I think every Democrat will vote to end the filibuster,” Cruz said. “I think the odds are very high that one of the first acts of a Democratic majority would be to add two new states to the United States, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Their reason for that is crassly political, that, in their judgment, those two would elect four Democratic senators. And so, if we start January with 50 Democratic senators, their objective would be to end the year with 54 Democratic senators and further cement their hold on power.”
Cruz added that the odds are high that Democrats will vote to pack the court, noting he’s skeptical of Democrats who have opposed the suggestion.
Author: Anthony Leonardi
Source: Washington Examiner: Ted Cruz says he would support constitutional amendment to secure nine justices on Supreme Court