In 1936, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt won reelection for his second four-year term. The victory wasn’t even close: 27 million votes for Democrat FDR, 16 million for Republican Alf Landon. In the Electoral College, FDR triumphed 523 to 8.
With that kind of lopsided victory, Roosevelt’s desire to expand government’s reach, even into arenas where no federal government power had previously existed, seemed readily achievable. However, he did face one significant hurdle known as the Supreme Court, where some of his desires for our nation had already been declared invalid. A majority of conservative judges had already scuttled some of his plans, and it certainly looked like they would declare more of the FDR’s socialism to be equally unconstitutional. Roosevelt and his team knew something had to be done to stop such interference. The president decided on a plan to “pack” the Supreme Court with more justices who agreed with his plans.