We are at a crossroads, perhaps well past. The Supreme Court justices, five of whom were appointed by presidents who failed to win the popular vote – have further loosened gun restrictions, weakened voting rights, and eliminated remedies for Miranda violations, as well as remedies for constitutional violations by the Border Patrol (whose jurisdiction extends 100 miles from the border). And now, six justices have banned abortion. I shudder to think of what is next: contraception, same sex and inter-racial marriage – welcome to the 18th century, at best.

Court expansion is required. The 9th circuit has 29 judges – it works fine. More justices means more moderate, representative outcomes, with the extremes of both ends remaining just that – extremes. There are many ways to accomplish expansion; what matters is that we do it. The current Supreme Court wants an America that looks like 1797. The Constitution, for all its strengths, was written by educated, propertied white men. Women and Blacks had no rights, and on both the Constitution is silent; voting is not mentioned in the Constitution, either.

Maine should also join the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, so that at least one branch of government represents the will of the voters. This SCOTUS may well overturn it, but an expanded court would likely recognize that the Constitution gives states the authority to determine how electors are chosen. Given the current tyranny of the minority, electing the president by national popular vote is essential.

Lori Calderone

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