The Volokh Conspiracy

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The Eleventh Rule of Court Packing Is Hold a 90-Minute Public "Meeting" Over Zoom

There should be just enough time to give a 2.5 minute introduction for each of the 36 members.


On May 4, a notice appeared in the Federal Register. President Biden's Commission on the Supreme Court will hold its first public meeting on May 19. The event will be over Zoom. And it will last only 90 minutes. This effort does not bode well for public deliberation. Given the strict time constraints, I doubt many, or even any of the 36 members of the committee will speak. There will probably be enough time for the chairs to make opening remarks, and introduce everyone.

The upshot of Zoom is that protestors cannot disrupt the hearing. And the members will be spared the indignity of actually having to say anything, and getting trolled online. Indeed, there would not even be enough time to give everyone a three minute introduction.

I doubt there will be any meaningful time to take questions from the public. To attend, you must email the Designated Federal Officer your contact information. And you can email comments by May 17. "But please be advised that Commission members may not have adequate time to consider the comments prior to the meeting."

I would commend everyone's attention to John McGinnis's column. He writes "It is a commission maculate in its conception and composition, if the objective were analysis free from partisan considerations." Agreed.

For those with a sense of nostalgia, you can see my prior Court-Packing posts here: Rules # 1234567, 8, 9, and 10.