Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff of California is calling to "unpack" the U.S. Supreme Court by adding more justices to the nine-member panel, a proposal that is often characterized by critics as court-packing.
The number of seats on the high court has remained at nine for more than 150 years. "The number of Justices on the Supreme Court changed six times before settling at the present total of nine in 1869," according to the Supreme Court website.
"Expanding the size of the Supreme Court isn't extreme or unprecedented — but the opinions of this Court certainly are," Schiff tweeted.
In addition to adding more seats to the high court, Schiff's call to "unpack" the institution would also include other elements.
"When I say we have to unpack the court, that means three things," the congressman tweeted. "Expand the number of justices on the court," he declared, adding "institute term limits," and "enact a code of ethics, just like every other federal court."
"In 2016, Mitch McConnell refused to even consider President Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. Over the next four years, Trump and McConnell pushed through three unpopular, problematic, far-right nominees," Schiff tweeted. "That's led to a 6-3, partisan and reactionary court majority that has repealed abortion rights, ended affirmative action, and is chipping away at clean air and water. SCOTUS is supposed to be an impartial and nonpartisan legal body — right now it's quite the opposite," he claimed.
Schiff, who has served in the U.S. House of Representatives for more than two decades, is currently running for a U.S. Senate seat.
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