Souter v. grassroots
Here we go again...don't get mad at me:
The effort to oust Supreme Court Justice David Souter from his house and property has remained on the march. Although few honestly think it will work--it's certainly a worthy effort since no one is breaking any laws of course.
The effort is in response to the Kelo v. New London case, in which some home owners were evicted from their properties for the "greater good" of having a business established on their property and having higher tax productivity on the area: It's called "eminent domain" in law-speak; another way of stretching the beyond recognition. I thought I posted on this last year when it hit the news...but I haven't been able to turn it up in the archives. (see update)
Here's the Associated Press piece on the latest (admittedly retaliatory) efforts.
The group, led by a California man, wants Justice David Souter's home seized for the purpose of building an inn called "Lost Liberty Hotel."Here's a few links for info on the Kelo decision.
They submitted enough petition signatures — only 25 were needed — to bring the matter before voters in March. This weekend, they're descending on Souter's hometown, the central New Hampshire town of Weare, population 8,500, to rally for support.
"This is in the tradition of the Boston Tea Party and the Pine Tree Riot," organizer Logan Darrow Clements said
A good abstract at Oyez.org
Justice John Paul Stevens, the majority held that the city's taking of private property to sell for private development qualified as a "public use" within the meaning of the takings clause. The city was not taking the land simply to benefit a certain group of private individuals, but was following an economic development plan. Such justifications for land takings, the majority argued, should be given deference. The takings here qualified as "public use" despite the fact that the land was not going to be used by the public.
Complete opinions (Steven's majority opinion and Kennedy's concurrence plus O'Connor's dissent and Thomas's concurring dissent)