October 4th, 2018 | by Dylan James Harper

The Republicans are going to confirm Brett Kavanaugh, giving the reactionary right a majority in every branch of government. Roe v. Wade will likely be gone very soon, as will a whole host of other civil rights that the court has maintained. The only reasonable approach is for the Democrats to pack the court.


Packing the court, which means adding several progressive justices to basically vote out the current reactionary majority, is not just possible, it’s easy. It doesn’t require any sort of constitutional amendment, nor would the extra judges require anything other than a simple majority vote. It’s even been proposed before, as many have already pointed out, when FDR’s mere threat of packing the court was enough to prompt the justices to move out of his way.

The simplest way to do it would be to add four justices, but really any sort of progressive majority voting bloc should add six, just to increase the logistical challenge of reactionaries packing the court themselves in the future.


More importantly, should the possibility ever arise, once the court is packed, impose strict term limits on justices, grandfathering in the packed court, and lock in the progressive number to prevent the court from ever being packed again. This would take a constitutional majority, but if possible would be well worth it to lock down the judicial branch.


The next two to six years (at a minimum) are likely to see almost all progress that’s come through the courts erased. Even issues that feel long resolved, like same-sex marriage, where it seems like the majority opinion in the country has moved beyond the issue, will likely be back on the table. There’s nothing that can be done in the immediate, at least that could occur inside the legal confines of government and outside a baseball field. The only possible way forward is to pack the court.

Dylan James Harper is the Political Editor for
Read more from Dylan at

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