Saturday, September 19, 2020


A new poll from Marquette University Law School contradicts conventional wisdom.
The vacancy on the Court created by [Ruth Bader] Ginsburg’s death greatly increases the salience of a possible appointment to the Court in the midst of a presidential election campaign. In the survey, 48 percent say that the choice of the next justice is very important to them and 34 percent say it is somewhat important, while 17 percent say it is not too important or not at all important to them.

Among likely voters who support Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, 59 percent say that the next court appointment is very important, while 51 percent of likely voters who support President Donald J. Trump say this.

For years we've heard that Republicans care about the Supreme Court and Democrats don't, but in this survey, Biden voters care more -- and here are the numbers sorted by party affiliation.

Democrats also support court-packing, although independents as well as Republicans oppose it:
(The poll was conducted September 8-15, before Ginsburg's death.)

We see real-world evidence of how important this issue is to Democratic voters:

This is happening despite the fact that Democratic officeholders and candidates never do anything to encourage interest in the Supreme Court. It's completely grassroots and spontaneous.

I wish the party and its presidential nominee had seen this concern increasing and made the Court (and judicial appointments in general) a bigger issue.

In any event, it's not going away. Democratic frustration will increase with every horrible decision made by the soon-to-be-6-to-3 GOP Court. The courts are no longer a Republican-only issue. I hope Democratic politicians understand that.

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