Fueled by dark money groups, corporate benefactors, and MAGA-aligned interests, Republicans have completely taken over the federal judiciary. For decades, Republicans have hijacked our courts, installing far-right extremist judges hell-bent on rolling back civil rights protections, reproductive justice, workers’ rights, LGBTQ equality, and more. During his presidency, Donald Trump ramped up the GOP’s historical attack on our courts, with help from his chief enabler, Mitch McConnell. Together, Trump and McConnell successfully confirmed over 200 judges to the federal judiciary, including three Supreme Court justices. These judges are overwhelmingly white, male, and inexperienced. Many of them were rated “unqualified” to serve as judges. Although Trump has mercifully left office, his judges will be on the bench for the rest of their lives, working to overturn any progressive legislation passed throughout the country.
Every single issue we care about comes down to the courts. Conservatives understand how important the courts are in blocking progress and protecting conservative interests. That’s why they want to get and keep control of the judiciary to ensure they can achieve their preferred outcomes in court even if they can’t in Congress -- by turning the judiciary into a partisan circus.
Why does this matter? Because an overwhelmingly conservative judiciary has already led to unfettered money influencing our democratic processes, the gutting of the Voting Rights Act which has led to historic voter suppression, rollbacks of critical environmental regulations, ongoing assaults on workers and immigrants, and perhaps worst of all, the overturning of Roe v. Wade, which has thrown abortion access into chaos across the country.
To unrig our courts, we need to pass bold, structural reform in these four areas:
- Supreme Court expansion
- Expansion of the lower federal courts
- Term limits for Supreme Court justices
- Improved ethics and transparency requirements
- This may seem complicated, but we can do this with a simple legislative vote with no need for constitutional amendments. Keep reading for more on Indivisible’s Court Reform Agenda to unrig our courts