According to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, 2 in 3 Americans are in favor of term limits or a mandatory retirement age for Supreme Court justices.
The poll found 67% of Americans support limiting the number of years that justices serve on the nation’s highest court. Currently, justices stay on the the court until their retirement or death. Like all federal judges, Supreme Court justices can be impeached.
Among their findings, the poll shows that Democrats are leading the way in the push for term limits on justices. 82% of Democrats and 57% of Republicans support a proposal to “set a specific number of years that justices serve instead of life terms,” per AP. They also found that 43% of Americans say they have hardly any confidence in the court. As AP noted, that number is much higher than it was three months ago when it stood at 27%.
Those surveyed were also asked about a proposal to increase the number of justices on the Supreme Court. 34% favored the idea, 34% were opposed and 32% were unsure. 52% of Democrats supported the proposal while 61% of Republicans opposed it.
Democrats have pushed to expand the court since Donald Trump’s presidency, in which he appointed three justices to the court – thereby giving conservatives a 6-3 majority. Supporters of the idea argue that having only 9 justices will lead to a partisan court. However, critics argue that Democrats only want to expand the court to regain the majority.
Confidence in the high court is currently at a record low, particularly among Democrats. 64% of Democrats say they have hardly any confidence in the institution. By comparison, this number was only 27% in April. Another 31% of Democratic have only some confidence in the court and only 4% have a great deal of confidence.
On the other hand, 34% of Republicans say they have a great deal of confidence in the institution — up from 21% in April. 47% also have some confidence in the court and 18% have hardly any.
This partisan divide is almost certainly due to the court’s recent overturning of Roe v. Wade, a decision that 63% of Republicans approve, while a whopping 80% of Democrats disapprove.
The poll, which surveyed a total of 1,085 U.S. adults, was conducted between July 14-17. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.
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