With three more weeks to go till the election, the media have made it clear that they aren’t going to stop asking Joe Biden whether he will pack the Supreme Court if elected. Biden for his part appears to grow more agitated each time he is backed further and further into a corner. (RELATED: Biden and Harris need an answer on court packing)
Yesterday he was asked by a reporter in Las Vegas whether he thought voters “deserve to know” where he stands on this pivotal question. Biden’s curt reply, which he probably already regrets, was “no, they don’t deserve” [sic].
The problem with ducking these question is that they tend to feed off one another. Yesterday, he was asked on the tarmac why he doesn’t think voters have a right to know his stance on court packing. His answer this time suggested he has no idea what the term court packing means:
The only court packing going on right now is going on with Republicans packing the court right now. It’s not constitutional what they’re doing. … I’m going to stay focused on it so we don’t take our eyes off the ball here.
Biden is again asked why voters don’t deserve to know his views on court packing. He responds: “The only court packing going on right now is going on with Republicans packing the court right now … I’m going to stay focused on it so we don’t take our eyes off the ball here." pic.twitter.com/E9H5rIXMX2
— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) October 10, 2020
But filling vacancies on the high court is not court packing, nor is it unconstitutional. In fact, the so-called Appointments Clause found in Article II, section 2 of the U.S. Constitution enumerates it as one of the president’s singular powers:
The President …shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint … Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, when Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law.
Notice that there is nothing in the Constitution that prohibits the president from making nomination once votes in a national election have been cast, as Biden also implies.