Every time a Supreme Court seat opens up the ensuing political fight reminds us that the Supreme Court shouldn't be so important.

The point isn't whether the Court got the questions right. The point is that it decided these important [political] issues and, having done so, took them off the table for democratic politics. When Congress decides an issue by passing a law, democratic politics can change that decision by electing a new Congress. When the Court decides an issue by making a constitutional ruling, there's no real democratic remedy.

That makes the Supreme Court, a source of final and largely irrevocable authority that is immune to the ordinary winds of democratic change, an extremely important prize. And when extremely important prizes are at stake, people fight. And get hysterical. ...

So to break it down: All the hysteria about a Ginsburg replacement stems from the fact that our political system is dominated by an allegedly nonpolitical Court that actually decides many political issues. And that Court is small (enough so that a single retirement can throw things into disarray) and unrepresentative of America at large.

I'm actually not against "packing" the Supreme Court. There's no reason it needs to have exactly nine justices. Pack it out to 100 and we might gain two advantages: first, higher throughput for our court system; second, less political fighting over SCOTUS nominations. Reynolds suggests that each state governor nominate a justice:

In an earlier article, responding to Democrats' plans to "pack" the Court with several additional justices whenever they get control back, I suggested going a step further, and add fifty new justices, one each to be appointed by every states' governor. My proposal wasn't entirely serious, being meant to point up the consequences of opening the door on this topic. But on reflection, maybe it was a better idea than I realized.

Sounds like a fine plan to me. Put some power back in the hands of the states.

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