Biden leaves door open to adding Supreme Court justices

Biden leaves door open to adding Supreme Court justices
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Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenSenate Democrats negotiating changes to coronavirus bill Rural Americans are the future of the clean energy economy — policymakers must to catch up WHO official says it's 'premature' to think pandemic will be over by end of year MORE on Thursday kept the door open to adding justices to the Supreme Court if Republicans push ahead with confirming President TrumpDonald TrumpProsecutors focus Trump Organization probe on company's financial officer: report WHO official says it's 'premature' to think pandemic will be over by end of year Romney released from hospital after fall over the weekend MORE’s nominee Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettSupreme Court faces landmark challenge on voting rights The Jan. 6 case for ending the Senate filibuster Laurence Tribe: Justice Thomas is out of order on 2020 election MORE.

Speaking at a town hall event on ABC, moderator George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosKhashoggi colleague: 'Why are we making an alliance with a dictator?' Fauci on Johnson & Johnson vaccine: 'Just be really grateful' Portman on Trump's dominance of GOP: Republican Party's policies are 'even more popular' MORE tried to pin Biden down on a question that has dogged the nominee for weeks on the campaign trail.

Biden appeared to say he’d provide a clearer answer before Election Day.


But he also indicated he’d be open to “court packing” if he thought Republicans were trying to rush Barrett’s confirmation through.

“I’m not a fan [of court packing] but it depends on how this turns out,” Biden said. “Not on who wins, but how it’s handled.”

“What does that mean, ‘how it’s handled,’ ” Stephanopoulos responded.

Biden said that if Republicans go through with Barrett “in a day kind of thing” he’d consider adding justices.

“It depends on how much they rush this,” Biden said.

Stephanopoulos challenged Biden, saying the candidate has always said it’s important to level with voters.


“Don’t voters have a right to know?” Stephanopoulos asked.

“They do have a right to know where I stand and they have a right to know before they vote,” Biden said.

“So you’ll come out with a clear answer before Election Day?” Stephanopoulos asked.

“Yes,” Biden said. “Depending on how they handle this.”

Biden has sought to evade the question for weeks now as Republicans have warned he’d give in to Democratic demands of adding justices to the Supreme Court.

“You know if I’d answer directly all the focus would be on what is Biden going to do if he wins, instead of on is it appropriate what’s going on now,” Biden said. “This is what the president loves to do, always take our eye off the ball on what is at stake.”