The Supreme Court has been neutered by Democratic threats to pack it.
The various schemes to add justices, rotate those now on the bench, or retire elderly members have had their desired effect: The Court is so intimidated that they have refused to weigh in on the central legal issue of our times: The honesty of the 2020 election.
This week, the U.S. Supreme Court refused even to hear the lawsuit brought by Rep Mike Kelly (R-Pa) and other Pennsylvania Republicans to decertify their states’ electoral votes so the integrity of the election can be, at last, scrutinized (for the first time) before the votes are awarded to Biden. Everyone knew that the Court would cave in and that even its so-called conservatives would fail to uphold the rule of law. But why did these once stalwart conservatives fold like cheap suits?
I believe it was because they were terrified that the power and credibility of their Court would be destroyed if they angered the Democrats who would then use their congressional majorities to make good on their threats to pack the Court.
Before Justices Alito, Thomas, Kavanaugh, Gorsuch, Roberts, and Barrett are conservatives, they are Justices of the Court. Their desire to protect their institution comes first, well ahead of their normal predilection for strict construction of the laws.
The laws themselves couldn’t be clearer. The Constitution specially vests state legislatures — and only the legislatures — with the power to determine the rules that govern presidential elections. And the Pennsylvania Legislature, in turn, specified that all mail-in ballots must be received within three days of the election to be counted. They also passed statutes governing verification and identification of voters and requirements for bi-partisan observers at the election polling places.
Then, the Pennsylvania Secretary of State specifically allowed mail-in ballots to be accepted only within three days of the statutory due date. The state also allowed the Legislature’s other rules to be disregarded and for Republican inspectors to be banished to the far corners of the polling places.
Kelly’s suit said that the Secretary of State violated the constitutional provision vesting the legislature with the power over the election. An open and shut case. But the Court, unanimously, refused to grant cert.
The threat of court packing first surfaced during the Democratic primaries in 2020 and was kept alive by various Party figures. Biden, for his part, waffled, saying he was not a “fan” of court packing, but refused to rule it out.
Why did the Democrats raise the issue in the first place during the election and emphasize it during the Barrett confirmation proceedings? The controversy was not an issue that could help Biden or the Democratic candidates. It was a hot potato they had to juggle in the weeks before the election.
The only point in raising the issue at that time would have been to shoot across the bow of the Court, warning it not to use the power of its new 6-3 conservative majority to stop the questionable — to say the least — practices the Democrats were planning to use to win the 2020 election.
Then, to be sure that the Court remained tame and disciplined, the Democrats have floated anew proposals to emasculate the Court. Their steamroller majorities in both houses make the threats sufficiently credible to force the Court to take them seriously.
All Court Justices are reported to feel that their institution was damaged in the 2000 Bush v Gore controversy. They are allergic to going down that road again, regardless of the law or the merits of the case.
Where elections and the possibility of fraud in this most fundamental aspect of our governance are concerned, we really have no Supreme Court.
The intimidation clearly worked!
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