Podcast | The Supreme Court’s shifting status in U.S. politics

Amicus host Dahlia Lithwick and Brennan Center president Michael Waldman discuss SCOTUS’s history and coming decisions.

Demonstrators with signs in front of a neoclassical-style building

Abortion-rights and anti-abortion demonstrators gather outside the U.S. Supreme Court Building in Washington, D.C., Friday, June 24, 2022. (Gemunu Amarasinghe/AP)

Though its mythology says otherwise, the U.S. Supreme Court is not a static institution. As its justices have slowly turned over, the Court’s ideological makeup and the nature of its decisions have changed. So too has the public’s perception of the Court.

For this episode of the Crosscut Talks podcast, we’re listening in on a conversation between Dahlia Lithwick, the host of Slate’s Amicus podcast, and Brennan Center president Michael Waldman about how the Court has transformed in the past century.

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Lithwick and Waldman dig into the Court’s past, present and future, connecting the dots from its long history to its current state and examining questions of its legitimacy and popularity, especially when it comes to Americans with more progressive politics.

As author of the forthcoming book The Supermajority: How the Supreme Court Divided America, Waldman has no illusions about the Supreme Court’s ability to rise above politics. In fact, he tells Lithwick, “We are in a great fight for the future of American democracy,” in part because of the partisanship he sees on the Court.

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