Rep. Collins says his constitutional amendment on court packing would take ‘heat of the moment’ out of debate
Democrats “just want to change the rules if they don’t get what they want,” Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., told “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday as he discussed his plans to introduce a constitutional amendment against packing the Supreme Court.
He went on to stress the need to “take the heat of the moment out of” the current situation as President Trump moves to nominate a candidate to fill the Supreme Court vacancy after the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday, ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
Democrats have threatened to implement a radical strategy and pack the Supreme Court if President Trump nominates a pick to fill the vacancy left by Ginsburg before the election.
Collins warned that packing the Supreme Court could diminish the integrity of the court and said he plans to roll out legislation this week which would prohibit a change to the size of the high court until 10 years after enactment of any legislation that would alter the number of seats on the court.
Collin’s proposal comes after House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., over the weekend said the incoming Senate should “immediately” expand the high court.
Collins noted on Tuesday that for the past two years “we’ve seen [that] any time the Democrats don’t get their way, they want to change the rules.”
“We saw it during sham impeachment,” he continued. “We saw it during everything on the House side especially and now it’s looking like the Senate is wanting to join in with it. They just want to change the rules if they don’t get what they want.”
“So what we’re going to say is this: If you want to pack the court, like Jerry Nadler, the chairman of the judiciary Committee said and others have said, then we want to put a constitutional amendment that says ‘let’s take the heat of the moment out of this,’” Collins went on to explain.
Just hours after learning of Ginsburg’s passing on Friday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., vowed that a Trump nominee to the Supreme Court “will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate.”
The president has also urged Senate Republicans to move forward in confirming his eventual nominee “without delay,” and told Fox News during an exclusive interview Monday that the confirmation should be complete before Election Day.
Collins explained on Tuesday that he proposed prohibiting a change to the size of the Supreme Court until 10 years “after the constitutional amendment’s actually approved” so that if Democrats are “really serious about this” and “have a reason to expand this court beyond your momentary temper tantrum, then we will actually have something that you can go ahead with, but it takes place 10 years after the heat of the moment that we’re in.”
There’s a high bar to passing an amendment: In order to pass, a constitutional amendment must receive approval from two-thirds of the House and Senate, as well as ratification from three-fourths of all states, or 38 out of 50.
On Tuesday, he stressed the need to “take the emotion out of this.”
His message to Democrats on Tuesday was, “quit always saying you want to change rules when you don’t get what you want.”
Fox News’ Brooke Singman, Ronn Blitzer and Adam Shaw contributed to this report.