After longtime Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away in September, President Trump and then-Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell both made it clear that a nomination to replace her would be made and that confirmation hearings would be held before Election Day. This infuriated the left, who began calling for adding Justices to the Supreme Court — otherwise known as “packing the court.”
Because Democrats were getting hammered with questions on court-packing, they tried to change the definition to mean filling existing vacancies. For example, Joe Biden said in October that “the fact is that the only packing going on is this court is being packed now by the Republicans after the vote is already begun.”
Even Dictionary.com got in on the act, dutifully adding a definition in early December that fell right in line with what Democrats were saying. In response to critics, Dictionary.com simply tweeted “Language evolves. So do we.”
Here we are several months later, and with President Biden’s executive order establishing a sham “bipartisan commission” to study the possibility of expanding the Supreme Court — and with some Democratic House leaders introducing legislation in favor of court-packing, Republicans are going on the offensive to counter their efforts to pack the SCOTUS.
Sens. Ted Cruz, Marsha Blackburn, and Lindsey Graham held a presser Thursday in front of the Supreme Court where they talked about the dangerous precedent it would set if Democrats were to be successful with attempts to add Justices.
But as the press conference was concluding, a Georgetown law student thought he’d try and upstage Cruz by accusing him of “hypocrisy” on court-packing. Why? Because in the student’s mind (and because clearly he’d been taught by his law professor to believe this, as you’ll soon see), Republicans not allowing Obama nominee Merrick Garland an up or down vote and then later adding a Trump-nominated judge (Neil Gorsuch) to the Supreme Court instead was the same thing as “court-packing.”
Watch the video below, as the student repeatedly badgers Cruz on the issue. What’s awesome about the video is that Cruz, a Harvard law grad, barely breaks a sweat in countering every “point” this guy tried to make:
— Billy Berns (@BillyBerns) April 22, 2021
The student’s professor later chimed in and expressed pride at how his student, who appeared to not have a clue what he was talking about, was “giving Cruz hell”:
One of my students came across Ted Cruz’s anti-Court-packing press conference and naturally gave him hell … https://t.co/XBbmY0QEM7
— Josh Chafetz (@joshchafetz) April 22, 2021
Except no, that’s not what happened at all:
Not sure if it’s a brag that your student doesn’t seem to know the difference between filling vacancies and adding seats to the court
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) April 22, 2021
The professor then tried to defend his student by basically confirming that he (the professor) was the one who taught him to believe there was no distinction between filling vacancies and adding judges:
Whole lotta folks suggesting that my student “can’t tell the difference” between adding judges and other ways of affecting judicial personnel as if he just blows right past the distinction. He doesn’t. He clearly argues that it’s a distinction without a difference.
— Josh Chafetz (@joshchafetz) April 23, 2021
It did not go over well at all:
Posting Georgetown Law’s L’s online
— Jamie DellaBonna (@JDellabonna) April 22, 2021
He seems to have really learned a lot Josh, keep up the great work! pic.twitter.com/b7ltZrr0yO
— Ian (@IanLysaght) April 22, 2021
If this is what the future of law professoring and lawyering in America looks like, we’re in a whole lotta trouble, y’all. I mean, I don’t want to put the cart before the horse here, but this is just not a good look — not for the law student, not for the professor, and not for a prestigious university like Georgetown.
Update: Cruz responds:
I assumed he was a Dem tracker reciting talking points.
Not sure what’s more embarrassing: that he’s an actual law student who doesn’t know the difference btwn filling vacancies & packing the Court.
Or that his law prof is proud of his ignorance & thinks it’s “giving me hell.” https://t.co/1TYl7041wQ
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 23, 2021