White House commission outlines risks of adding justices to Supreme Court

The commission released the report ahead of its first public hearing on Friday.

Updated: October 14, 2021 - 8:39pm

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The Biden administration’s commission studying potential reforms to the Supreme Court released a draft report on Thursday that expressed concern over potentially adding more justices to the bench.

“Court expansion is likely to undermine, rather than enhance, the Supreme Court's legitimacy and its role in the constitutional system,” the commission noted in its report. “There are significant reasons to be skeptical that expansion would serve democratic values.”

The commission wrote that Congress has the legal authority to add seats to the nation’s highest court, noting that the U.S. Constitution doesn’t specify the number of justices allowed on the bench.

Members of the bipartisan commission were divided about expanding the court, but appeared to agree on the benefits concerning potential term limits for justices, instead of lifetime appointments.

This draft report comes ahead of the 36 member commission holding public deliberations on Friday. The final report is scheduled to be delivered on Nov. 14 to President Joe Biden.