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An Interview with Eric Posner

Summary:
This week in Say More, PS talks with Eric Posner, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School and the author of the forthcoming How Antitrust Failed Workers. Project Syndicate: You’ve written that a right-wing Supreme Court is a major headwind for Joe Biden’s administration. But increasing the number of seats, you warn, is a “favored tactic of despots,” and Franklin D. Roosevelt’s attempt to use it “caused lasting political damage to his presidency.” Biden has now created a commission to examine a number of possible reforms, including introducing term limits for justices. What changes, if any, could mitigate the risks to Biden’s political agenda from an ideologically hostile Supreme Court while preserving America’s

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This week in Say More, PS talks with Eric Posner, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School and the author of the forthcoming How Antitrust Failed Workers.

Project Syndicate: You’ve written that a right-wing Supreme Court is a major headwind for Joe Biden’s administration. But increasing the number of seats, you warn, is a “favored tactic of despots,” and Franklin D. Roosevelt’s attempt to use it “caused lasting political damage to his presidency.” Biden has now created a commission to examine a number of possible reforms, including introducing term limits for justices. What changes, if any, could mitigate the risks to Biden’s political agenda from an ideologically hostile Supreme Court while preserving America’s constitutional order?

Eric Posner: The Supreme Court will not be reformed. There just isn’t sufficient political support. Biden convened the Commission to buy time, not to reform the Court.

If I could wave a magic wand, the reform I would like to see is the creation of a procedure so that Congress could overturn Supreme Court decisions with a supermajority or some similarly reasonable hurdle. Term limits are not a bad idea, but will not by themselves solve Biden’s problems unless they’re applied retroactively to sitting justices, which is not going to happen.

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