In the Vice President Debate Wednesday night, Vice President Mike Pence accused the Biden-Harris campaign of planning to pack the Supreme Court if they win the election. The topic, which is a huge concern for the American people, is one that is often speculated about. But when asked directly by Pence, Harris refused to answer the question.
And today, at a campaign stop, Biden said that he would not reveal his position until after the election. He said, “You’ll know my opinion on court packing when the election is over.”
Biden continued, “It’s a great question, and I don’t blame you for asking. But you know, the moment I answer that question, the headline in every one of your papers will be on the answer to that question.” He said that this question is just a distraction for the real issues happening in America.
But for many Americans, this is a real issue, and is the reason Biden is so hesitant to reveal his position. After the Republicans under President Trump have secured two justices, with one more on the way, the bench is now solidly conservative. To offset the conservative majority, Democrats have floated the idea that if Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed, they’ll make up for it when Biden wins by “packing the court” with liberal judges.
The power of the president to appoint a Supreme Court Justice is a key voter issue for many Americans. With the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg right before the election, the Democrats have tried every method possible to stall the vote. They have argued that the vote goes against precedent, and say Merrick Garland was blocked by McConnell because it was an election year. McConnell, however, has said it is a different circumstance, because now, the Republicans have the majority in the Senate and the White House.
During the first presidential debate, Biden also refused to answer the question. It is an issue that clearly divides his moderate and progressive base, and would be a huge motivator for voters at the polls.