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The idea of “court-packing,”⸺that is, adding seats to the court for political purposes⸺has recently gained steam for the first time in nearly 100 years. The last time we heard about court-packing, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s plan to add more justices was supposedly staved off by the infamous “switch in time that saved nine.” As the story goes, Justice Roberts (no, not THAT Roberts) strategically cast his vote in West Coast Hotel v. Parrish in way that subdued popular support for FDR’s proposal. But a closer look into that case reveals that not everything is as it seems, as well as the perils that come with trying to pack the Court.
Thanks to our guests Mark Tushnet, Barry Cushman, and Ilya Shapiro, and to singer Jenni Kim-Etimos for her jazzy rendition of our court-packing ballad.
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