Donald Trump is taking heat for his attempt to coerce government into taking an elderly woman’s home away from her against her will. And he should be taking heat for this shameful behavior.
Trump’s ignorant response is that without eminent domain, there would be no highways, Keystone pipeline, blah blah blah. He is correct. The Fifth Amendment allows government to take private property for public use. Note the term “public.”
Can eminent domain be used to build a highway? Yes. The road will be for public use. Can eminent domain be used to build mass transit? Yes, because again the transit line will be for public use. Keystone Pipeline? Yep. Long-distance pipelines are like highways. They cannot be built without eminent domain. Without pipelines, we all would be paying more for gasoline, home heating oil, natural gas, et al.
In the mid-20th century cities began urban renewal programs to clear slums and blighted areas. Eminent domain was used to acquire large tracts of land for these projects with federal government approval. Removing slums and blighted areas benefits all who live and work in the city, and in most cases, the relocated residents ended up in better housing than they were in. These urban renewal programs continue to this day.
In my city, eminent domain was used recently to clear a blighted area for a convention center. Again, a government-owned project for public use. I should note one property owner sued the city for low-balling them, and won. Back in the ’90s, eminent domain was used here to clear a large very blighted area, and a football stadium was built by the city and is publicly owned. Now residents of my city can go there and enjoy football games, soccer games, concerts, car shows and a host of other events.
Eminent domain is not intended for a private citizen to use political contributions to coerce politicians to remove an elderly woman from her home against her will, give, sell or lease the property to the politically connected citizen to build a parking lot on the woman’s land for a casino he owns next door. The property was taken (or attempted to be taken) by a private businessman to be used as a parking lot for his business. That is private use and the fifth amendment does not allow for that. The woman sued, won, and kept her home.
That Trump admits he would use the power of government to help himself makes him no different than Barrack Obama. That doesn’t sound very conservative. That he cannot tell the difference between private use and public use tells me he in not intelligent enough to be President of the United States.
Use of name-calling, shouting and profanity is indicative of low intelligence. Trump is a chump.