News of his plan for the commission comes after the candidate has declined in recent weeks to answer whether he would expand the number of justices on the Supreme Court, a proposal that is commonly referred to as “court packing.” Following the vacancy on the Supreme Court left by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, some progressive members of the Democratic Party have floated the idea of expanding the size of the court and adding liberal justices should Biden be elected and Democrats take the majority in the Senate.
“If elected what I will do is I’ll put together a national commission of — bipartisan commission of — scholars, constitutional scholars, Democrats, Republicans, liberal, conservative, and I will ask them to over 180 days come back to me with recommendations as to how to reform the court system because it’s getting out of whack, the way in which it’s being handled,” Biden said in a one-minute released clip from his “60 Minutes” interview with Norah O’Donnell.
“And it’s not about court packing. There’s a number of other things that constitutional scholars have debated and I’ve looked to see what recommendations that commission might make,” he added.
Biden warned against the Supreme Court turning into a political football.
The full interview will air on CBS’ “60 Minutes” Sunday.
The former vice president gave his most direct answer on the issue last week when he signaled that he’s “not a fan” of court packing, and he promised last week during an ABC town hall that he will provide a clearer stance before the election.
“So you’ll come out with a clear position before election day?” ABC’s George Stephanopoulos asked.
Biden replied, “Yes. Depending on how they handle this,” referring to Senate Republicans.
As he has avoided directly answering the question, Biden has taken to accusing President Donald Trump and Senate Republicans of court-packing, saying their push to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court before the election is an effort to undo the Affordable Care Act.
“Getting rid of Obamacare is why they are racing to get this nominee through the Supreme Court,” Biden said in remarks in Michigan last Friday. “Make no mistake about it, Trump has made it clear from the beginning … he wants to get rid of Obamacare in its entirety. And with this nominee, he’s made that incredibly clear as well.”