The Supreme Court stands at a crossroads. As the court prepares to hear its first cases of the 2016-2017 term next week, Senate Republicans’ unprecedented six-month blockade of Chief Judge Merrick Garland’s nomination has resulted in a state of dysfunction at our nation’s highest court. This upcoming term demonstrates both the incredible importance of the Court and how it has been dangerously hobbled by the lack of a ninth justice.
Last term, the shorthanded Supreme Court failed to decide a host of critical issues, sometimes punting the issue back to lower courts. The Court presumably deadlocked in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, which examined whether union dues were a form of compelled speech. Read more