New Justice, Same SCOTUS Problems: Ketanji Brown Jackson’s historic confirmation made headlines this week. But she’s walking into a court that many think needs an overhaul.
Late this week, after those hearings, the Senate confirmed KBJ to the Supreme Court. The judge won’t be sworn in until this summer when Justice Stephen Breyer retires. But the orientation is bound to be…interesting. That’s because the court is deciding on cases that stand to reshape American life. And its public approval is nearing an all-time low.
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Partisan interference. From publicity-grabbing antics to party-line votes, SCOTUS confirmations are all about party politics. That wasn’t always the case: Up until the ‘00s, justices often got bipartisan — sometimes even unanimous — approval. That all seemed to change after the Merrick Garland snub. So, it's no surprise that one poll found only 16% of Americans think justices are truly impartial. But (reminder) they’re supposed to be — especially since they’re ruling on matters as critical as the future of Roe v Wade, affirmative action, and the most important Second Amendment case the court has heard in over a decade.
Code of ethics. In light of a certain someone’s texts (u up, Ginni Thomas?), there’s been a big Dem push for the Supreme Court to adopt a formal code of conduct…à la every other federal court in the country. But that would require Congress passing new legislation. And it’s unlikely to get the bipartisan support it would need. Add it to the list of other major overhauls that are sitting in the corner (see: court packing and term limits).
Emergency docket (aka shadow docket). Something that even Chief Justice John Roberts has called an abuse of the court’s emergency powers. It’s when the Supremes rule on cases without the typical rounds of arguments and deliberations. And without signing or explaining their decisions. Historically, this happened mostly for death penalty cases. But more and more, in cases that change the rights of millions of Americans. (Think: Texas’s abortion law, EPA rules, vaccine mandates.)
Some of the most impactful decisions that affect our rights come down to the nine justices of the Supreme Court. That's why there are such strong opinions on whether it’s equipped to address the challenges of today. This week, the court got a pretty big update: a new sitting member. While KBJ’s confirmation does not tilt the balance on the bench, her position on it brings overdue representation and diversity to a centuries-old institution — where, for the first time ever, white men will not be the majority.
The weekend means more time to do the things you love. For many of us, that’s reading. But we can’t Skimm it all for you. So instead, we’re giving you a look at the reads we’ve saved, texted, and emailed to our friends…
An Ex-Cop Fell for Alice. Then He Fell for Her $66 Million Crypto Scam…and there's little he can do to get it back.
The Library Ends Late Fees, and the Treasures Roll In…how a policy change at New York’s public libraries led to many happily ever afters.
How Serena Williams Saved Her Own Life…in her own words, one of the greatest tennis players of all time describes her near brush with death during childbirth.
Downtime doesn’t have to mean doing nothing. Here’s one idea for making the most of your weekend.
What if we told you spring cleaning could be all about the things that bring you joy? A method called quieting helps make decluttering a way to refocus.
Step 1: Remove everything from a room (yes, everything).
Step 2: Bring back only the things you love.
The result? More physical — and mental — space for the year to come.
And to make what's left behind look even better, check out our recs for cleaning supplies that'll go the extra mile. We've got everything from eco-friendly options to clever products to help organize your closet. Plus, our ultimate guide to cleaning your bathroom.
PS: If you need more motivation to get the job done, Clea and Joanna of The Home Edit are here to help.
Powering off for the weekend? We get it. So we Skimm’d one thing we thought you shouldn’t miss.
While chirping birds are a tell-tale sign of spring, this weekend is also all about birdies (and bogeys). It’s the 2022 Masters Tournament at Augusta National. So far, the biggest controversy is the steep hike in sandwich prices. But the final rounds are sure to tee up more drama. In the meantime, everyone’s following Tiger’s — possibly triumphant — return.
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