The confirmation of Justice Amy Coney Barrett means that Chief Justice John Roberts is no longer the Supreme Court’s swing voter.
Roberts had a good run in the seat of power, deciding cases on the census citizenship question, the rescission of DACA, and abortion rights. Now, however, he won’t be able to determine a case’s outcome by joining the court’s liberals. With only three liberals left on the court, Roberts would have to convince another conservative to join him to produce a liberal result. The justice who provides that fifth vote becomes the swing voter.