Democrat legislators in the House have officially introduced a new bill that would set in place a set of extremely strict term limits for the Justices of the Supreme Court and set in place a mandate that the current President make brand new appointments to the court every two years.
One group of Democrats within the House, which are led by Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson, brought the bill forward into the record late Tuesday. The bill in question, which has ben labeled as the “Supreme Court Tenure Establishment and Retirement Modernization Act of 2022,” or TERM Act, would set a term limit of 18 years on Supreme Court Justices, and make a mandate that forced the President to appoint a justice ot the Court twice throughout each term.
The very first section of the bill deals with the new rules for the appointment of justices. The bill reads:
The President shall, during the first and third years after a year in which there is a Presidential election, nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoint one justice of the Supreme Court.
This new bill only lets Presidents appoint justices to the Supreme Court via these specific parameters.
Next, the bill sets up an 18-year term limit for Justices of the Supreme Court from the time they are commissioned to serve on the High Court. The text regarding this reads:
Each justice shall serve in regular active service for 18 years from the date of the justice’s commission, after which the justice shall be deemed to have retired from regular active service under section 371.
In the same vein, the bill would force all currently sitting justices of the High Court at the time of the passage of the bill to officially retire from their seats upon the first appointment of a new justice, starting with the current longest sitting judge and following down the list of judges by their duration of service.
Additionally, the bill seeks to alter current laws on the books about the total number of sitting justices. The new bill stated that whenever the total number of justices drops below the number set in place by the law, “due to vacancy, disability, or disqualification,” the most-recently retired just will be called back up in the role of an associate justice until such time as a replacement has been appointed by the President.
This new bill was brought forward to the House by Georgia Congressman Hank Johnson; co-sponsors of the bill include New York Congressman and Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee Jerry Nadler, Judiciary Committee members David Ciciline of Rhode Island, Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, and Steve Cohen of Tennessee, and California Reps. Karen Bass and Ro Khanna. A slightly different version of the bill is also being brought out in the Senate by Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse.
As reported in a statement to go along with the legislation, Johnson went after the current composition of the Supreme Court, claiming that the Court is “facing a legitimacy crisis” due to the current conservative majority and because currently five of the sex conservatives were set in place by Presidents that failed to win a majority in the popular vote.
“This Supreme Court is increasingly facing a legitimacy crisis,” stated Johnson. “Five of the six conservative justices on the bench were appointed by presidents who lost the popular vote, and they are now racing to impose their out-of-touch agenda on the American people, who do not want it. Term limits are a necessary step toward restoring balance to this radical, unrestrained majority on the court.”