Brigham Young University Prelaw Review


Supreme Court, nominations, political polarization, ideological polarization, polarization, term limits, nuclear option, precedence, Justices, Originalism, Living Document, good behaviour, tenure


The Supreme Court nomination process evolved over the past years to include changes not specified in the Constitution. Because of the obstruction and filibuster of nominees by the Senate minority parties, the “nuclear option” was instituted and effectively modified the process. The life long tenures of the Justices, the increase of public attention to the process and the Supreme Court’s decisions is causing nominees to face an unnecessarily difficult path to a seat in the Supreme Court. We address this issue by discussing (1) the recent changes to the process and their effects, (2) the consequences of life-long tenure and how they can be alleviated by term limits, (3) the basic interpretations of the Constitution and how each would support implementing term limits. We advocate for instituting term limits to ease the consistent debate between the two parties concerning nominees.

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