Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Why oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press?


WASHINGTON (AP) - Chief Justice nominee John Roberts said Wednesday that Congress has the right to counter Supreme Court rulings including a divisive decision giving cities broad power to seize and raze people's homes for private development.

``This body and legislative bodies in the states are protectors of the people's rights,'' Roberts said on the third day of his confirmation hearings to be the nation's 17th chief justice.

Republicans and many Democrats reacted angrily earlier this year when a sharply divided Supreme Court said cities can take and bulldoze people's homes in favor of shopping malls or other private development to generate tax revenue. The decision drew a scathing dissent from Justice Sandra Day O'Connor as favoring rich corporations, and Republican lawmakers have criticized it as infringing on states' rights.

This isn't about countering Supreme Court rulings. This is American Government 101. Decisions like Kelo either limit or don't limit congressional power in certain areas. In the case of Kelo, no new limits were placed on the power of government but nothing prevents governments from either just not using all of the powers available to them or passing statutory limits on the use of the eminent domain power.

This is not news, this is just evidence that Roberts has a rudimentary understanding of how things work in this country, which I'd sort of assumed.