Harris 'open' to adding seats to Supreme Court

Harris 'open' to adding seats to Supreme Court
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Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisKavanaugh impeachment push hits Capitol buzz saw Mark Mellman: The most important moment in history? Biden leads in new national poll, Warren close behind in second place MORE (D-Calif.) signaled openness on Wednesday to expanding the Supreme Court amid what she called a “crisis of confidence” created by Republicans in the nation's high court.

Bloomberg reported that Harris, asked in Nashua, N.H., whether she would support adding as many as four justices to the bench, said she was "open" to the conversation.

"I’m open to this conversation about increasing the number of people on the United States Supreme Court,” the 2020 presidential candidate said, according to Bloomberg.

Harris also expressed openness to limiting how many justices one president can nominate and applying term limits to justices, according to the news outlet.

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Brian Fallon, a former Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGOP struggles with retirement wave Overnight Energy: Trump to revoke California's tailpipe waiver | Democrats propose bill to revoke Trump endangered species rollback | Trump officials finalize rule allowing fewer inspectors at pork plants Mark Mellman: The most important moment in history? MORE campaign staffer who runs the liberal advocacy group Demand Justice, told Bloomberg her reply was “a welcome signal from Harris.”

“Especially with Roe so clearly under assault, we cannot settle for the status quo when it comes to the Supreme Court," Fallon said, referring to the landmark Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion. "The court is too partisan in its makeup and has too little regard for precedent. Democrats need to think boldly."

Harris has signaled openness to court-packing before, telling Politico in March “We are on the verge of a crisis of confidence in the Supreme Court … we have to take this challenge head on, and everything is on the table to do that.”

The question came from an audience member at a campaign stop who said the Republican-controlled Senate “stole” Justice Neil Gorsuch’s seat by refusing to hold a vote on then-President Obama’s nominee to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia, Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandSupreme Court comes to Trump's aid on immigration Gorsuch: Those who don't have 'great confidence in America' should 'look elsewhere' Trump stacking lower courts MORE.

The possibility of expanding the Supreme Court has emerged as a key litmus test in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary field, which has ballooned to 22 candidates.

South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegKavanaugh impeachment push hits Capitol buzz saw 2020 candidates keep fitness on track while on the trail Mark Mellman: The most important moment in history? MORE and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke (Texas) have both signaled they could back expanding the high court.

“I think the question is whether or not they’re out of touch with just how partisan and illegitimate this Supreme Court has become in its willingness to throw out precedent and sort of the way it's undermining the rule of law,” Chris Kang, the chief counsel for Demand Justice, said in March. “They need to come to terms with that in order to really help lead and to help push the progressive policy platform forward.”