09 Feb 2006

Souter’s House Saved

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The town of Weare, New Hampshire, voting at one of those traditional New England town meetings, rejected a bid to take Justice David Souter’s house by eminent domain. The proposal to seize Souter’s house to build a “Liberty Hotel” had been originated by a California libertarian jokester as a protest against Souter’s vote in the notorious Kelo v. New London decision, upholding a town’s taking of private property for transfer to a developer.

Professor Bainbridge thinks Weare should have taught Souter a lesson.

Ann Althouse endorses the prevailing viewpoint of Souter’s neighbors: He was just doing his job.

Personally, I think that job entails interpreting the Constitution faithfully and correctly, not sophistically bending its provisions to facilitate the empowerment of government at the expense of the rights of the people. Let’s hope that finding himself, even in jest, the potential victim of the involuntary loss of his home made Mr. Justice Souter, at least momentarily, revisit the issue with a keener appreciation of the rights of the individual.

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