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Justice Breyer Endorses Supreme Court Term Limits

Fix the Court executive director Gabe Roth released the following statement on Justice Stephen Breyer’s endorsement of term limits for Supreme Court justices:

Fix the Court praises Justice Breyer for his support of Supreme Court term limits and agrees with him that a fixed term would have to be ‘long enough [so] that those appointed wouldn’t immediately be thinking about their next job.’ We favor the notion that once justices leave the Supreme Court after 18 years, they should be allowed to serve for life as federal appeals court judges.

Supported by two-thirds of the country, such a proposal would allow former justices to lend their expertise to circuit courts and continue to make an impact on the law, though not by imperiously remaining on the high court for 30-plus years, as has become the norm.

Further, this 18-year strategy would remove the need for a constitutional amendment, as Congress could pass a law defining the life tenure clause in the Constitution as referring to a lifetime federal judgeship, with only 18 years of which being served on the Supreme Court.

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