Former President Donald Trump was able to appoint an unprecedented three Supreme Court justices during his time in the White House.
Those moves have already significantly shaped the future of the high court, giving it a conservative supermajority that has already handed down major decisions on abortion, gun rights and affirmative action.
This week, Trump says that if he were to be elected president again in the 2024 election, he would appoint even more justices to the Supreme Court – packing it with younger conservatives who could serve on the bench for years to come.
During an appearance at the Moms For Liberty conference that was held in Philadelphia recently, Trump said he has plenty of plans to pack the court even more. As he said:
“Many presidents never get the opportunity to appoint a Supreme Court justice. I had three. They are gold. Maybe we’ll get three or four more. Can you imagine?
“Let’s have seven or eight or maybe even nine.”
Appointing as many justices as he suggested there would require Trump to “pack” the Supreme Court so that he could add more justices than currently serve on the high court. Democrats have considered doing that to try to tilt the balance back their way, but it hasn’t been something associated with Trump or Republicans in the past.
It’s very possible that Trump was just being facetious, as he often does when he’s speaking to large crowds – making a point that he has plans to appoint as many conservative Supreme Court justices as possible.
Whoever is elected as the next president has a chance to potentially appoint two justices to the Supreme Court. Conservative Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas are getting up there in age, and rumors have swirled that both could retire in the coming years.
If that were to happen, it would present a huge opportunity for the next president. If that person were Trump or another Republican, they could appoint much younger conservative justices who would be able to keep the conservative majority for years to come.
If that person were President Joe Biden or another Democrat, they could effectively shift the balance of power back in their favor. While the court is now a 6-3 majority for conservatives, if Democrats were able to appoint two liberal justices to replace the two conservative ones, that would tilt the power to Democrats, who would hold a 5-4 majority on the high court.
That makes this upcoming presidential election even more important, as if there weren’t enough major issues to get people interested in heading to the polls. Of course, it’s not a guarantee that Alito or Thomas will retire, but the mere fact that it’s a strong possibility means that the future of the Supreme Court could hinge on whoever is elected president in 2024.
In addition to Trump, the Moms for Liberty conference hosted other GOP presidential candidates Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis.