Democrats are “saying they’ll burn down the Constitution,” Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., claimed on Monday following some on the left vowing to pack the Supreme Court if elected.
“They lost the election in 2016, they lost the White House," Hawley said on "Fox & Friends." "So, listen, if they win back those things, they’ll be able to confirm and nominate their own justices in the future, but, to say because they lost elections that now that they will break all of our Constitutional norms and standards, they’ll pack courts, they’ll conduct impeachment hearings to stop a president from carrying forward his Constitutionally authorized privileges and responsibilities. That’s insane.”
As President Trump moves to nominate a candidate to fill the seat of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday, there are a growing number of Democrats threatening to implement a radical strategy and pack the Supreme Court if they take control of the White House and the Senate.
“If he holds a vote in 2020, we pack the court in 2021,” Rep. Joe Kennedy III, D-Mass., tweeted on Saturday. “It’s that simple.”
“Mitch McConnell set the precedent. No Supreme Court vacancies filled in an election year. If he violates it, when Democrats control the Senate in the next Congress, we must abolish the filibuster and expand the Supreme Court,” Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., tweeted.
The idea of “packing” the court with extra justices — attempted unsuccessfully by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1937 to force through parts of his New Deal that were ruled unconstitutional by the high court — has bubbled away on the fringes of the party for years.
But it began to seep into the mainstream after Republicans refused to hold hearings for Merrick Garland — President Barack Obama’s 2016 pick to replace Justice Antonin Scalia — because it was an election year.
Hawley said that he “hopes” American voters are “listening carefully.”
“This is the same party that looks away while rioters and looters burn down our towns. Now, the Democrats are saying they’ll burn down the Constitution. These people should not be in power.”
Fox News' Adam Shaw contributed to this report.