Biden has now established the commission, a 36-member body of law professors and retired judges, and given it six months to do its job. There is no telling what it will say--if anything--about court-packing or anything else.
Just here it is important to note another player who joined this game only recently--Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. In a two-hour lecture at the Harvard law school, the 82-year-old Breyer, one of the court’s liberals and a reliable pro-choice vote, strongly opposed court packing, saying such blatant politicizing would undermine public willingness to accept the court’s decisions. In view of this opposition from an eminent pro-choice source, Biden has even stronger grounds for saying no to ‘packing,’ when and if the need arises.
Against this background, the pro-lifers on the court would seem be safe in accepting Dobbs or some other abortion-related case for review, without the threat of court-packing hanging over their heads. If they do, that could mean oral argument in the fall and a decision before the summer of 2022.
It will be apparent that much of the foregoing is conjecture. But conjecture is the most anyone can do concerning the outcome of a game whose rules and objectives are known only to its players--and they aren’t talking.