Court Battles

New poll finds 1 in 3 say they might consider abolishing or limiting Supreme Court

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One in 3 U.S. adults said in a new poll that they might support abolishing or limiting the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court in certain circumstances.

The survey, released Monday and conducted by the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, found that 34 percent of respondents would consider abolishing the Supreme Court if it started issuing rulings that most Americans disagreed with. Sixty-five percent of respondents said they would not support such a move.

The 34 percent of respondents who voiced support for potentially taking action against the court was up significantly compared to just two years ago, when that figure was 20 percent. It also exceeded the share of comparable surveys conducted as far back as 2005.

The most recent poll also found that 38 percent of adults said they would support stripping the Supreme Court of its jurisdiction on issues where the justices and Congress disagree, compared to 61 percent who were opposed to such action. The percentage in favor was higher than in surveys going back to 2007.

The survey results come as the court kicks off a new term, with the 6-3 conservative majority slated to hear cases on a number of hot-button issues including access to abortion, gun control, religious liberty, national security and capital punishment.

The recent poll also found that 59 percent of respondents believe justices make decisions based on the Constitution, the law and the facts of a case rather than their personal and political views. That figure was in line with the 56 percent from last year but higher than the 49 percent in 2019.

Still, 37 percent of respondents this year said they believe justices are more inclined to make decisions that reflect the political affiliations of the presidents who nominated them. That number was about the same as it was in the past two years.

The poll, which was conducted by SSRS, surveyed 1,008 adults from Sept. 7 to 12. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.


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