Who Died & Made the Supreme Court Queen?

Terry Baum
5 min readJul 12, 2022


Of the current Supremes, four committed perjury when they said during their nomination hearings that they would not vote to overturn Roe v. Wade. Perjury is a crime punishable by imprisonment. Perhaps once The Four have been tried and either exonerated or served their time in jail, they can resume their positions on the Supreme Court. Justice Clarence Thomas should recuse himself from all federal decision-making because his wife tried to overturn the federal government. However, if the Supremes do go so far as to overturn Loving v. Virginia (1967), which made interracial marriage legal in all states, then — depending on where they live — the Thomas’ marriage might be invalid and there would no longer be that basis to object to the Justice’s participation in the Court.


A judicial coup. I find it hard to write those words. Aren’t we in the middle of hearings about an electoral coup that we just barely avoided?

Please notice that wonderful key word in the last sentence: “avoided.” Yes, it was terrible that Trump almost overturned the election. But he failed. That’s very comforting, isn’t it? I feel very comforted by that fact.

But now we’ve somehow backed ourselves into a full-blown judicial Coup. I believe AOC was the first person to call the Supreme Court’s recent flood of decisions, to undo all social and environmental justice progress within its reach, a Coup.

I really hate that word, “coup.” Coups are something that happens in other countries. I’m used to reading in the NY Times about a coup here, a coup there. I shake my head at how awful it must be to live somewhere where such things happen. And then I forget about it.

I would like to forget about the possibility of our deeply flawed democracy being overturned. I’m ready to start worrying about other things.

Oh well. This is what history is giving us. This is what’s on our plates.

This judicial seizure of power from the legislative and executive branches of the federal government is indeed illegal, as it violates the constitutional insistence on a balance of power between the three branches of the government. And foremost, it is a seizure of power from the majority of citizens, who fully support the progress that has been made.

The remedy is simple:

Add four more justices to the Supreme Court now.


On Friday June 24, the Supreme Court’s out-of-control right-wing supermajority eviscerated our reproductive freedoms by overturning 50 years of precedent guaranteeing a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion,” Stand Up America executive director Christina Harvey said during a Monday, June 27 webinar announcing the “Four More” campaign — a project also backed by Demand Justice, Indivisible, and Take Back the Court Action Fund — in support of the Judiciary Act. The proposed legislation, sponsored by U.S. Reps. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), and Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.), would increase the size of the court by four justices.

So three progressive Democratic members of Congress — including the redoubtable Rep. Nadler of New York — have proposed legislation: The Judiciary Act, which would add four new justices to the Supreme Court NOW. (I consider Nadler redoubtable because he’s been there forever and is in the habit of being courageous.) This legislation is now before Congress.”


The Judiciary Act is like any federal legislation. It just needs a majority in the House and the Senate to become law. It’s not like impeachment, which needs a 2/3 supermajority.


There is nothing sacred about nine justices on the Supreme Court. The Constitution doesn’t mention a number. The Court started out at five justices. So at some point, they added four more.

Compared to almost every other country, our Supreme Court is absolutely puny with just a lousy nine: Italy and Israel have15, England 12, Holland 36, France 120 (yes!), Belgium 30. All these countries have much smaller populations, but they wouldn’t consider giving final arbitration power to just nine human beings.

Still think adding four Justices is “too extreme?” Consider what this right-wing, power-drunk Supreme Court has done in one session:

  1. Denied Social Security benefits to the residents of Puerto Rico,
  2. Blocked a federal vaccine-or-test requirement,
  3. Denied detained immigrants bond hearings,
  4. Undermined tribal sovereignty,
  5. Allowed the CIA to withhold information about torture at black sites (a black site is a secret facility used by the U.S. as a prison and interrogation center, whose existence is denied by the government.)
  6. Entrenched Louisiana’s racially gerrymandered electoral maps
  7. Attacked the separation of church and state,
  8. Denied legal protections in the 100-mile border zone,
  9. Limited the rights of death row inmates,
  10. Overturned state-level concealed carry laws,
  11. Denied Miranda rights,
  12. Blocked the authority of federal agencies to safeguard public health and the environment, and…
  13. Overturned the constitutional right to an abortion.

That’s just one session, and they have no intention of stopping. They have already agreed to hear cases next term that would:

  • Overturn the right to same-sex marriage
  • End affirmative action.


  • Allow state legislatures the right to set election rules, even if they were in conflict with that state’s constitution. And these rules would only be subject to review by the Supreme Court. This would allow a Republican state legislature to submit a slate of false electors — that is, electors who do not represent the will of the majority of the state voters. This was one of the schemes Trump tried in 2020. But he was stopped by state courts. But if the Supreme Court has its way, state courts would have no power in 2024. Only the Supremes would.

There’s more than one way to skin a democracy!


Adding justices to the Court is social change that we, the people, can actually make happen. We have a majority in both Houses now.

I know, I know. It won’t be easy in the Senate. But we can’t just give up because it’s not easy. Democracy is not about just creating change when it’s easy. FDR had to fight hard for the New Deal and the social safety net his administration created. He campaigned to pack the Supreme Court because the Court was declaring all his programs unconstitutional. He didn’t succeed in adding justices, but in the end, the Supreme Court backed down. Why? Because it saw that the American people were outraged by its decisions and many of them supported FDR adding justices. Sometimes in politics, even when you lose, you still win.

This is something we can do. Let’s pressure our representatives to vote for the Judiciary Act before November elections.


Click “DEMAND JUSTICE” now to start taking action:

Sign the petition.

Meet with your Senators.

Meet with your Congress Member.

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Terry Baum

Terry Baum is an actress, director, teacher, filmmaker, political activist, and award-winning lesbian playwright. Her blog BAUMBLOG is a “Top 100 LGBTQ Blog.”