September 14, 2016
Republicans currently hold the majority but that has not stopped liberals from gaining control of 70% of US appeals courts. This marks a significant shift as liberals only controlled 1 of 13 circuit courts when Obama took office.
And soon, the Senate may approve even more liberal judges, even though the practice has been to stop nominee approvals in the final months of a presidency. And liberals are even hoping to approve Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court in a Lame Duck session.
While the shape of our court system is in transformation, Heritage scholars John Malcolm and Tiffany Bates recently warned that the future of the courts is in the next president’s hands:
"On the day our next president takes the oath of office, Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be 83, Anthony Kennedy (long considered the pivotal swing vote on the court) will be 80, and Stephen Breyer will be 78 years. All three have already exceeded the average life expectancy for men and women in this country. Other courts are at stake, as well.”