Senate

Romney blasts end of filibuster, expansion of SCOTUS

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) warned that ending the Senate filibuster and expanding the Supreme Court would "forever diminish" the country's foundation as Democrats mull revamping certain aspects of the legislative and judicial branches. 

"My Democrat friends decry the last president for weakening our institutions with his words and behavior but they now cheer the effort to pack the Supreme Court and end the Senate filibuster, which would forever diminish institutions at our Republic's foundation," Romney wrote on Twitter. 

Romney has touted himself as an institutionalist since his election to the Senate in 2018 and has grappled both with Republicans' ties to former President Trump and what he sees as overreaches from Democrats since President Biden's inauguration. 

His warning comes as progressives press Biden and Senate Democrats to scrap the filibuster, which requires most legislation to garner 60 votes to pass.

Biden has been cool to the prospect, while the 50-member Democratic conference in the Senate lacks the votes to end the rule given opposition from Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and other centrists.

Meanwhile, Biden on Friday announced an executive order establishing a commission to study whether to add seats to the Supreme Court. 

Biden said in October that he was "not a fan" of expanding the court but progressives have advocated for either expanding the bench or implementing term limits on the high court after Republicans installed three justices during the Trump administration.

Republicans came out swinging against the plan Friday, with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) likening it to a "direct assault" on the judiciary. 

"This faux-academic study of a nonexistent problem fits squarely within liberals' years-long campaign to politicize the Court, intimidate its members, and subvert its independence," he said in a statement.

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