Kelo v. New London prepares to bite Bush in the ass.
The House voted yesterday to use the spending power of Congress to undermine a Supreme Court ruling allowing local governments to force the sale of private property for economic development purposes. Key members of the House and Senate vowed to take even broader steps soon.Please, journalists, please ask Bush about this and then follow up with:
Last week's 5 to 4 decision has drawn a swift and visceral backlash from an unusual coalition of conservatives concerned about property rights and liberals worried about the effect on poor people, whose property is often vulnerable to condemnation because it does not generate a lot of revenue.
George W. Bush loves baseball. And why not? After all, baseball has been very good to the governor. When it comes to power, the governor is a true triple-threat. Consider his record: (1) His initial baseball investment of $600,000 carries the current potential of a 2,500 percent return. (2) Through savvy P.R. and political maneuvering, he and his partners have persuaded a city and the state to directly subsidize a facility for their business. (3) Not content with taxpayer subsidies, he and his fellow owners have also successfully used the power of government to take land from other private citizens so it could be used for their own private purposes...
On October 27, 1990, Bush was quoted in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram about the Rangers’ real estate plans, acknowledging "the idea of making a land play, absolutely, to plunk the field down in the middle of a big piece of land. That’s kind of always been the strategy." While Bush insisted on April 11 that he was "not aware of the details" in 1990 regarding plans to condemn the Mathes’ property, he clearly did know of the plans to exploit that land—"making a land play"—for commercial purposes that would benefit himself and the owners of the Rangers.
In recent years, the use of eminent domain in Texas has grown more common. It was used to acquire land near the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, and for a controversial shopping center built in Hurst. The trend has caught the attention of Republican Senator David Sibley of Waco, one of Bush’s closest allies in the Legislature. While the Senator would not comment directly on the deal that allowed Bush and his partners to obtain the land around the Ballpark, Sibley said he is worried about potential abuses of eminent domain. "I will tell you as a butt-kicking conservative Republican, I am very concerned about it, I really am," he said. "It causes me problems."
How is Tom Delay going to tell Texas they're going to lose federal funds?