By Lawrence Pareles
The opinions expressed in this post are strictly those of the author and do not necessarily reflect opinions or positions held by Indivisible Northampton.
The U.S. Supreme Court just finished its most consequential term in decades. Its new extremist majority is out of control and is preparing to take away even more of our rights and freedoms. In a single year, six justices ended womens’ right to their personal freedom to make critical and personal decisions about their own reproductive care, ended states’ rights to make sensible gun rules, limited the ability of the EPA to reduce air pollution, and eroded the boundary between church and state. They have done this by ignoring past precedent and offering spurious “originalist” theory to justify their actions.These actions are radical and very unpopular, and seriously threaten Americans’ freedoms. This extreme Court is driving our country towards dictatorship and social upheaval.
The next term could be much worse. The Court is reviewing a case that invokes the “Independent State Legislature Doctrine,” a questionable theory that state legislatures alone have complete, total control over federal elections in their states – without interference from governors, secretaries of state, the state’s supreme court, or even the state’s constitution. Under this theory, lawmakers could ignore the popular vote of the people, and instead send their own chosen electors to the Electoral College. This could allow legislatures to legally steal elections – including for the president – and be the end of democratic elections in America. This radical theory could be approved by this extreme Court if they are not stopped.
It’s time to fight back! Congress can rein in this rogue Court majority – there are several ways it could control the damage. It can expand the Court, limit the terms for justices, and enforce a code of ethics on these radical justices who have no bounds. Congress can pass the Judiciary Act of 2021 to expand the Court to thirteen justices. It could set more limits on the Court by removing the right of judicial review which lets the Court rule on legislation.
Congress could also pass laws that most Americans want — protecting voting rights and reproductive rights, controlling guns, improving healthcare, lowering drug prices, and so much more.
It’s time to put some limits on the Extreme Court to protect our rights, our votes, our democracy, and our future. Although the current Senate rules may prevent passage of these laws now, passing them in the House will send a strong message to the Court that their radical agenda is unacceptable. Then we need to do everything possible to keep the Democratic majority in the House, and elect at least two more Democratic Senators in November to overcome the filibuster next year. I urge readers to help make this a reality.