What are some of the dangers of passing any constitutional changes to the number of justices?

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What are some of the dangers of passing any constitutional changes to the number of justices? President Roosevelt was outraged when the Supreme Court invalidated two of the most important New Deal initiatives – the National Industrial Recovery Act and the Agricultural Adjustment Act on what he regarded as an outmoded interpretation of the Constitution. Like many liberals, he believed that much of the problem stemmed from a bloc of four conservative Supreme Court justices – the so-called “Four Horsemen” – who seemed to oppose any federal intrusion into economic affairs. Given that there was a total of nine justices on the Court, all the Horsemen needed to do to block any New Deal measure was to convince one more justice that their interpretation was correct. Emboldened by his overwhelming reelection victory in 1936, the president in February called congressional leaders and members of his cabinet to a meeting at the White House, and informed them that the Judicial Procedures Reform Act was being put before Congress that same day. Many of the justices on the Supreme Court were elderly, the president explained, and needed more assistance in working through the Court’s heavy caseload. The act, therefore, proposed to add a new justice for every member above seventy years of age. Given the makeup of the current Court, this would allow Roosevelt to name no fewer than six new justices. There was nothing unconstitutional about Roosevelt’s plan, since the Constitution does not specify how many judges the Supreme Court should have. When some in Congress balked at Roosevelt’s plan – accusing the president of trying to “pack” the Court – he took to the airwaves in one of his famous “Fireside Chats.” Instructions: Listen to FDR’s speech by clicking on the link below. Click here to listen to FDR’s Fireside Chat on Reorganization of the Judiciary, March 9, 1937 Answer the following questions: 1. Why does Roosevelt think that the federal judiciary needs to be changed? How does he invoke the Constitution to defend this? What is his proposal, and on what grounds does he seek to justify it? 2. What are some of the positive reasons to change the Judiciary? 3. What are some of the dangers of passing any constitutional changes to the number of justices? 4. Why did the “Court Packing” Plan ultimately fail? 5. Do you believe the US Supreme Court should be changed? Why or why not?