The GOP war on the independence of the judiciary – Governor ‘Il Duce’ signs his court packing scheme


Our authoritarian Tea-Publican legislature and Governor “Il Duce,” the ice cream man hired by Koch Industries to run their Southwest subsidiary formerly known as the state of Arizona, have nearly completed their court packing scheme. The hostile takeover of the formerly “independent” judiciary will be complete with the appointment of two Arizona Supreme Court justices. Ducey signs bill to expand AZ Supreme Court:

imussol001p1Gov. Doug Ducey signed legislation Wednesday to expand the state Supreme Court to seven justices from five, saying the additional judges will allow the court to take on more cases and ensure “swift justice.”

Ducey’s approval of House Bill 2537 will cost the state an additional $1 million and came despite objections from Chief Justice Scott Bales, who earlier this month asked the Republican governor to veto the legislation. In that letter, Bales wrote additional judges are not needed and expansion “is not warranted when other court-related needs are underfunded.”

Ducey will have the final say on the two new justices; in January, he appointed Clint Bolick, a registered independent and Goldwater Institute litigator, to the bench.

In a letter explaining his signing Wednesday morning, Ducey said the additional justices will put Arizona on par with states that have similar or smaller populations yet more Supreme Court justices. He cited Nevada, Colorado, Washington, Wisconsin and Massachusetts.

“Arizonans deserve swift justice from the judicial branch,” Ducey’s letter said. “Adding more voices will ensure that the court can increase efficiency, hear more cases and issue more opinions.”

To those who argue the bill is unnecessary and the justices’ caseloads are not burdensome, he wrote, “…I believe you’ll hear a different story from the businesses and individuals facing litigation, who are in need of certainty.”

It’s also a convenient way to pack the court with more Koch-bot justices like Clint Bolick who will allow the governor and our lawless Tea-Publican legislature to violate the Arizona Constitution and the law at will, as they routinely do, without being held accountable for their lawless actions. Tea-Publicans are politicizing the Court — after being found by the Court to have violated Prop. 301 education inflation adjustment funding — and are undermining the independence of the judiciary. This is their way to hedge their bets in future cases.

As even the GOP-friendly Arizona Republic editorialized Court expansion is about 1 thing:

Make no mistake: This is about power.

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Remember what the founders said

Expanding the court to give him the chance to pack the court would result in a concentration of power that was condemned as far back as 1788, when James Madison wrote this in Federalist 47:

The accumulation of all powers, Legislative, Executive, and Judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.

This is not just some quaint idea from a long time ago. It is a bedrock principle of the Constitution conservatives claim to honor.

This is the time to live up to those principles.

Our authoritarian Tea-Publican legislature and Governor “Il Duce” are seduced by the power of tyranny.

It’s time to end this Tea-Publican tyranny in Arizona and to kick these evil GOP bastards out of office en masse in November.


  1. This is the end of our democracy in Arizona. Voters will vote (R) down ticket and the next session of the legislature will be the most extreme and bizzare thing this state has ever seen. Guns in schools, public school elimination, elimination of unions, illegal abortions, voter suppression, and the elimination of voter referendums. Arizona has managed to be one of the first states for ALEC to gain full control and influence over our government. This will is a sad time for our state and our nation.

  2. Judicial activism in the defense of ultra conservative ideology is no vice. Doug Ducey

  3. Arizona’s Supreme Court has been a model of high quality with the method of choosing candidates. It has not been a hugely partisan Court, like other States, but has been highly respected for its restraint and evenhandedness. That will all go out the window as Ducey picks Scalia-like ideologues. This was another consideration anticipated when the plaintiffs agreed to the hideous Prop 123 settlement. Ducey can now also bounce members of the Judical Commission when they don’t sent him kooks like Scalia or Thomas. His pick of Bolick is as clear a signal as could be made. Disgusting.

  4. Can you imagine the outcry of Janet Napolitano had tried to pack the court like the Koch Brothers just did? Ducey has shown the continuing liar he has revealed himself to be with his “rationale” on court packing.

  5. Too bad the Republicans in the AZ Legislature could not have seen fit to follow the example of their brethren in Washington and left the new appointments until after the next gubernatorial election.

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