Connecticut Supreme Court Justice to Susette Kelo: "I'm Sorry"


A hell of a story from The Hartford Courant's Jeff Benedict, who was present for an extraordinary encounter between Connecticut Supreme Court Justice Richard N. Palmer and Susette Kelo, the homeowner he once voted against in the infamous eminent domain case:

I had delivered the keynote address [at the New Haven Law Club] on the U.S. Supreme Court's infamous 5-4 decision in Kelo v. New London. Susette Kelo was in the audience and I used the occasion to tell her personal story, as documented in my book "Little Pink House."

Afterward, Susette and I were talking in a small circle of people when we were approached by Justice Richard N. Palmer. Tall and imposing, he is one of the four justices who voted with the 4-3 majority against Susette and her neighbors. Facing me, he said: "Had I known all of what you just told us, I would have voted differently."

I was speechless. So was Susette. One more vote in her favor by the Connecticut Supreme Court would have changed history. The case probably would not have advanced to the U.S. Supreme Court, and Susette and her neighbors might still be in their homes.

Then Justice Palmer turned to Susette, took her hand and offered a heartfelt apology. Tears trickled down her red cheeks. It was the first time in the 12-year saga that anyone had uttered the words "I'm sorry."

Palmer should be sorry. So should U.S. Supreme Court Justices John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, David Souter, and Anthony Kennedy, whose five votes upheld Palmer's erroneous judgment and put the final nail in the coffin.

(Thanks to How Appealing for the link.)