- Democratic nominee Joe Biden was pressed on whether he is in favor of “court packing” during a town hall on ABC Thursday night.
- Biden said he is personally not in favor of adding justices to the Supreme Court, but warned Republicans may force his hand.
- “It depends on how this turns out,” Biden said of the confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
- “If I answer the question directly, then all the focus will be on, what’s Biden going to do if he wins, instead of if it is appropriate, what is going on now. This is a thing the President loves to do, which is always take our eye off the ball.”
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Democratic nominee Joe Biden was asked to clarify his stance on court packing during Thursday night’s town hall on ABC, and he mostly demurred by explaining he thinks the issue is a distraction and not something he personally supports.
Court packing — a catch all term generally referring to adding more justices to the Supreme Court to shift its ideological balance — has dogged Biden for the past few weeks, with more reporters asking him and campaign surrogates about it ever since Sen. Kamala Harris would not answer a question about it during the vice presidential debate.
Biden explicitly said he does not want to come out with a stance because he believes it is part of an effort by President Donald Trump to distract from more pressing issues at hand.
—ABC News (@ABC) October 16, 2020
Biden promised to come out with a position on the issue by Election Day, noting he wants to wait until the confirmation process for Judge Amy Coney Barrett is over.
“It depends on how this turns out,” Biden said, warning that Senate Republicans moving ahead with Barrett before voters have the chance to pick a new president may force his hand.
“If I answer the question directly, then all the focus will be on, what’s Biden going to do if he wins, instead of if it is appropriate, what is going on now,” Biden said. “This is a thing the President loves to do, which is always take our eye off the ball.”