Ganesh Sitaraman Profile picture
Professor of Law, @vanderbiltlaw. Formerly: @ewarren and @SenWarren. Author, "The Great Democracy."
Oct 26, 2020 8 tweets 2 min read
If, for whatever reason, you find yourself thinking about reforming the Supreme Court today…here is my series outlining the options and their pros and cons.


Class 1: Court expansion: Class 2: Term Limits
Oct 7, 2020 8 tweets 2 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 8, The BIG reveal – I said at the start that the goal of this series was to help answer the question, what is the best Supreme Court reform? And we’ve now discussed a bunch of proposals. 1/ We’ve looked at pros/cons/constitutionality of court expansion, term limits, the balanced bench, the lottery court, supermajority requirements, jurisdiction stripping & legislative overrides. Whew! 2/
Oct 6, 2020 8 tweets 2 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 7, Congress Strikes Back. Let’s talk about legislative overrides. “How can the legislature override the Court,” you ask? After all, we think the job of a Supreme Court is to “say what the law is!” 1/ But it’s possible. In Canada, the legislature can re-enact a law after it gets struck down & it’ll go into effect “notwithstanding” the Court decision. We don’t have a provision like that in the U.S., but that doesn’t mean Congress can’t sometimes review the Courts. 1/
Oct 5, 2020 10 tweets 3 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Day 6, jurisdiction stripping. Most recently pushed forward by @samuelmoyn @rddoerfler 1/… Idea is that Congress can bar the Court from hearing cases on certain laws. This would prevent Court from striking down fed statutes 2/
Oct 2, 2020 9 tweets 3 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 5, supermajority voting requirements. The idea is that Congress could say that for Scotus to strike down a fed law, there needs to be 6, 7, or 8 votes out of 9, not just majority rule. 1/ Pros: shifts power from Court to political branches. If 7-2 decision to strike statute, then must be *really* clear it was unconstitutional. If 5-4, then fight your battle through normal politics. @samuelmoyn @rddoerfler 2/…
Oct 1, 2020 12 tweets 4 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 4, Should Scotus feel the Bern?? The lottery or panel approach, mentioned by @BernieSanders during the campaign last year. @Robillard 1/… The basics: all judges on the fed. courts of appeals would be appointed assoc. justices. The 180+ Supreme Court would hear cases in panels of 9, randomly picked. They’d go to DC for 2 weeks of oral arguments, then write decisions from home. Cc @danepps 2/…
Sep 30, 2020 14 tweets 6 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 3, the “balanced bench,” or the 5-5-5 plan, first outlined in @voxdotcom. You might know it because @PeteButtigieg discussed it quite a bit during the Dem primary last year. 1/… The idea: expand size of the Court to 15. Require there be 5 from D-list & 5 from R-list. Those 10 pick the other 5 from the courts of appeals to serve for one year. No agreement and the Court can’t sit that year. Me & @danepps explain @YaleLJournal: 2/…
Sep 29, 2020 14 tweets 5 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: Class 2, term limits. @RoKhanna @RepJoeKennedy @DonBayer have introduced a bill on 18-year terms, supported by @fixthecourt. This idea has pros, but it also has underappreciated drawbacks. 1/… The plan: 9 J's serve for 18 yrs, with staggered terms. A new J picked every 2 years (pres. term means 2 picks). Current J's remain on the Court for life, so there’d be more than 9 for a bit. New J's retire to lower courts after 18 yr term 2/…
Sep 28, 2020 15 tweets 5 min read
SUPREME COURT REFORM 101: As a law prof who came up w/ Scotus reforms discussed by multiple pres candidates, I often get asked what proposal is best. So for the next week, I’ll discuss one proposal a day. Today’s topic: expanding the size of the Court. A thread! 1/ Many D’s are making the case for expanding the size of the Supreme Court in response to McConnell’s 1st blocking Garland and now pushing forward on ACB. A good overview from @danpfeiffer 2/…
Sep 11, 2020 4 tweets 3 min read
If you didn’t think everyone needed internet before, COVID-19 has made it clear. Telemedicine, school, remote work – all much harder without it. @EmilyStewartM has a good new article @voxdotcom… A public option for broadband is doable. Chattanooga has implemented this policy to good effect. Cc @AndyBerke…
Sep 10, 2020 9 tweets 4 min read
On the left and right, there is rising interest in industrial policy. My new @TheProspect piece argues that industrial policy has been with us since the Founding – and there have been four traditions in American industrial policy. 1/9… Franklinians emphasize knowledge and infrastructure, from R&D to networks and utilities like the Post Office to railroads. These inputs enable growth and development. 2/9
Jul 29, 2020 7 tweets 3 min read
With the #BigTechHearing getting underway, a couple thoughts about what it means to #breakupbigtech and some prebuttals on a couple counter-arguments. 1/7 1st, proponents of breaking up big tech are focused on unwinding mergers and separating tech platforms from commercial activity that works across the platform. My take on how to do it. 2/7…
Mar 21, 2020 8 tweets 4 min read
Over @americanprospect, @LevMenand and I outline seven lessons from the Great Recession that policymakers should keep in mind in grappling with economic policy choices.… 1 As @rortybomb has noted, a stimulus needs to be big and recurrent.…
Mar 3, 2020 8 tweets 3 min read
Today Scotus hears a case on the constitutionality of the CFPB’s structure. Non-const. arguments often seep into cases, so check out @arieldobkin and my new paper arguing that single-director agencies are better than commissions. 1/8… @arieldobkin We argue that if you want federal agencies that are attentive to health & safety, regulated capitalism, & enforcement of laws, a single-director agency is superior, even if there are admins in which the agency director is hostile to the agency’s mission 2/8
May 6, 2019 5 tweets 2 min read
1/5 What is a “progressive” higher ed plan? Some commentators have suggested the Warren plan of free higher ed, debt cancellation, more $ for HBCUs, ending subsides to for-profits & expanding Pell Grants isn’t progressive because the middle class benefits. This is bizarre. 2/5 First, the plan is paid for by a wealth tax on fortunes above $50 million, so it is obviously “progressive” in the sense of progressive taxation, and it is misleading to ignore this part of the plan.
Apr 17, 2019 4 tweets 2 min read
1/4 @danepps & I have written an article, forthcoming @YaleLJournal, arguing the balanced court plan is constitutional. You should take a look at it, Mark!… 2/4 We think the proposal does not require constitutional amendment. Judges often serve on other courts without presidential appointment - we offer examples in the paper.