Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson Praises Anthony Kennedy, Unaware That Kennedy Voted for Eminent Domain Abuse in Kelo v. City of New London

"I didn't realize that Kennedy actually was part of that."



Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson recently paid a visit to the editorial board of The Wall Street Journal. Here is how Johnson responded to a question about the U.S. Supreme Court, according to the Journal's Joseph Rago:

Asked about his ideal Supreme Court justice, Mr. Johnson names Anthony Kennedy, "I guess." But what about Kelo v. New London, the 5-4 decision in 2005 that held eminent domain is more or less unlimited authority to confiscate private property—with Justice Kennedy writing for the majority? [Note: Kennedy did not write for the majority. He joined the majority and wrote a concurrence.] "That was horrible," Mr. Johnson says. "I didn't realize that Kennedy actually was part of that."

Good grief. Just last month Johnson described Kelo as a case that "really stands out as a litmus test" for judicial nominees. Assuming that Rago's account here is accurate, Johnson's failure to identify one of the justices who voted the wrong way in that case is not exactly inspiring.

On the other hand, unlike Donald Trump, Johnson at least knows that Kelo was wrongly decided.

Related: Gary Johnson and the Promise of Libertarian Constitutionalism

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  1. New Johnson slogan: Win One For The Doper

  2. That write in vote for my brother has been cemented as stay home and drink whiskey.

  3. Well, this is the same Gary Johnson who called Hillary an excellent public servant or something to that effect.

    1. Wasn’t that his veep? Oh hell, I’m not paying attention either. Carry on.

      1. Nope Johnson was “wonderful public servant”. Weld was “nice kid” he enjoyed working with her during the Nixon impeachment. Neither could think of a nice thing for Trump.

        Obama was a “good guy” according to Johnson, “statesman” by Weld. Weld also described Obama as picking up his game the past few years. How I could not guess.

        The pair came out of the gates embarrassing the LP and libertarian ideas.

        1. Do either of these guys know any actual libertarians? Maybe they should read this blog from time to time. They might learn something.

          1. At least the comments.

        2. Obama was a “good guy” according to Johnson, “statesman” by Weld

          See also the “Who Reason Staff are voting for” article that was posted on Sunday.

    2. When people ask about my take on the presidential candidates I say that all 4 are incredibly disappointing

  4. Protip: nobody named Kennedy is your favorite anything.

    1. Protip: nobody named Kennedy is your favorite anything.

      “Hear, Hear!”

      /Fox Business

      1. I thought her name was Montgomery.

          1. Lisa Kennedy Montgomery is best known to a generation as, simply, Kennedy…”

            Oh, look at this:

            “Her next project, a Fox Business roundtable called The Independents, will allow Kennedy and her co-hosts, Matt Welch and Kmele Foster, to tackle news from an angle that, in her mind, is both tough to find on TV and absolutely vital. “The reason our show exists is because the idea of a two-party system has failed,” she tells EW.”

            How old *is* that article?

            1. It’s been at least a couple of years since Kennedy locked Welch up in her basement and took over the show, right?

            2. Did you look at the URL?

              1. 3 &gt 2

      1. “He can get to the bottom of any situation!”

  5. I’m starting to wonder if Hillary, Trump, and Johnson aren’t all Manchurian candidates sent to destroy their parties…

    1. If this shit show doesn’t finally wake up the American public, nothing will.

      1. I thought it was going to happen in 2004. That election disillusioned me from then on. It’s always going to be this way from now on. There might be an election where it’s not all that bad, but it won’t be “fixed” and the American public won’t be “woke” or whatever.

        1. I can imagine nothing worse than the American public getting all woke and shit.

          Turn the entire country into a progtarded uni campus? No thanks.

  6. Alex Kozinski, the nation’s leading libertarian-leaning judge, says that Kelo was correctly decided. He said that in an interview with Reason, a few years ago.

    Kelo was wrong, but not blatantly wrong. Reasonable people can disagree about it.

    I think Kelo was wrongly decided, but that argument relies on implications from the constitution’s text, not the literal language of the Constitution.

    Note that even under Kelo, the government still has to compensate you for the property it takes. Unlike the regulatory takings totally destroying economic value that the Supreme Court has upheld in cases like Lingle v. Chevron, where there is no compensation at all (upholding even economically devastating rent control that wipes out the NET value of the business you purchased).

    No serious land use scholar thinks Kelo was the Supreme Court’s worst property rights decision, or even one of the top ten worst. It’s just mildly stupid.

    1. Plus I was under the assumption that the Supreme Court said it’s a legislative issue. If you want it changed, then change the law.

      That’s how Obamacare got passed: Democrats and Republicans voted for it and the President signed it off.

      1. The Constitution is a piece of legislation, too, you know.

      2. Which Republicans voted for Obamacare?

        1. I thought one house rep did.

          1. Nah, you’re probably remembering Obama had to lean really hard on some “conservative” Dems to go along without language carving out abortion or somesuch.

            1. I think so. Oh well. They really dont own it

      3. No Republicans voted for Obamacare.

        1. Hype and Ice are correct – what the fuck am I thinking of?

          1. Hype and Ice are correct – what the fuck am I thinking of?

            It’s cool, dude- I figured Susan Collins would vote for it too…

      4. That’s how Obamacare got passed: Democrats and Republicans voted for it and the President signed it off.

        Please name 1 Repub that voted for Obamacare (John Roberts doesn’t count).

    2. Are you sure you want to argue from authority?

      Kozinski seems to believe that The People v. Larry Flynt is an awesome, epoch-making work of cinema.

    3. I think Kelo was wrongly decided, but that argument relies on implications from the constitution’s text, not the literal language of the Constitution.

      No, the argument that Kelo was wrong is based on the text, which reads:

      nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

      If memory serves, Kelo said that private property could be taken for a public purpose, which is very different and much broader than a public use. Kelo also said that taking property so that it would later pay higher property taxes is a public purpose (which shows just how broad “purpose” is).

      1. Note too, that the language of the 5th does not provide that the property can be taken without the express written consent of the owner.

        The framers obviously did not contemplate that any property could be taken without the express written consent of the owner. If they had intended that the property could be taken without the express written consent of the owner, they would have so stated. They did not.

        1. Let us not forget that Alex Kozinski is a public sector actor who has not exactly distinguished himself in the private sector by making and producing a product or providing a service upon a purely voluntary and consensual basis.

      2. No, the argument that Kelo was wrong is based on the text, which reads:

        nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

        Agreed, but of course it was not Kelo that morphed ‘use’ into ‘purpose.’ So, and this is admittedly a little pedantic, Kelo was bad, but not awful, based on the precedent, because it took such an expansive view of public purpose. But it is the precedent making it public purpose in the first place that is the real problem.

        That said, I bet the various justices that over time expanded ‘public purpose’ would just have easily expanded the meaning of ‘public use.’ As in, “the public put the property to use as a generator of property tax income,” or some such bullshit.

        1. it was not Kelo that morphed ‘use’ into ‘purpose.’

          Not arguing. Don’t recall.

          1. Hmm, I take it back. I just re-read Kelo and it goes way further than precedent warranted. Fuck that case.

      3. Actually, Kelo said that it’s the City Council of New London that gets to determine what’s a “public use” and what isn’t. I think the court believes what’s a “public use” is not self-evident.

        Between the lines, it says: “Politics matters, and it matters who you elect. Don’t come to the court to fix all the problems created by the stupid, corrupt, self-interested politicians that get elected.” In that sense, the decision is really another Marbury v. Madison and is a reminder that the Supreme Court isn’t going to put its reputation on the line every time a legislature effs-up.

  7. Groovus pointed something out a couple-few weeks ago, and this certainly helps validate it.

    Gary Johnson doesn’t check his work, and doesn’t look stuff up.

    1. Maybe Johnson posts here as he clearly doesn’t read articles

  8. I know it was a 5-4 liberal majority, but I didn’t know Kennedy was on the court then. Still not disqualifying. At least he’s against Kelo. That’s more important.

    1. The important thing is Johnson has an experienced lawyer to advise him on judicial candidates.

      That lawyer-adviser: William Weld.

      1. William Weld is a life long public sector employee who, when not a public sector employee, was aspiring to be a public sector employee.

    2. I didn’t know Kennedy was on the court then.

      How is this possible?

  9. What’s Keloleppo?

    1. Chopped liver.

  10. The evening of our politic dwindles under the burgeoning shadows of drear.

    1. That… was beautiful. (Wipes away tear)

      … Hobbit

  11. Seriously???
    You’re complaining that someone didn’t know the way a particular justice voted on a years ago court case?
    Quick how many words were in the dissenting opinion? Who wrote it and did they use their middle initial to sign their name to it?

    1. The problem is that he was offering his (admittedly tentative) opinion that Kennedy was an “ideal Supreme Court justice” (a paraphrase, but let’s assume the WSJ wouldn’t make this up).

      He *could* have said, “I’ll have to get back to you…let me ask some people…”

      “Well, the people I called said that whatever I do I shouldn’t praise this guy Anthony Kennedy!”

      1. Of all the times he could have admitted the gaps in his knowledge, this was an ideal opportunity.

        “Let me get back to you” are the five magic words that can save a lot of stress later.

          1. “Lemme get back to you.”

          2. +3 Spanish Inquis…4! +4 Spanish Inquisition!

      2. Swing justice Kennedy, who regularly sides with the “MOAR GUBMINT!!!” wing of SCOTUS, is the ideal justice?


        1. Just remember these words of Johnson’s … “wonderful public servant” … that was about Hillary Clinton. I can no longer take the guy seriously.

    2. You don’t understand SCOTUS at all if you can’t figure out which 5 voted against Kelo.

      1. This^^. You would expect a seasoned politician whose litmus test is Kelo to have actually read Kelo and realized that their ideal SCOTUS justice was on the wrong side of their litmus test.

        Johnson is really bad at basic “be consistent” politics. I can forgive 100 “Where’s Aleppo” gaffes before I can forgive these basic ConLaw 101 screwups.

  12. It is entirely inappropriate to expect any candidate to have instant recall of encyclopedic knowledge. Might it be reasonable to assume that, prior to actually nominating a candidate to the supreme court, Johnson would do some homework?

    1. I’m actually a little forgiving of him not knowing the Kennedy was in favor of Kelo, but this is part of the sum of his errors, goofs, and lack of knowledge.

      Might it be reasonable to assume that, prior to actually nominating a candidate to the supreme court, Johnson would do some homework?

      Considering his lack of preparation for the LP debates and the general election interviews and town halls I’d say that’s unreasonable. The man had over 4 years to read and develop some principles and he clearly did not even look at a book.

      1. I imagine myself subject to real-time questions from all possible directions and perspectives, and know that I would fare little better than Johnson. On the other hand, I’m far too wise ever to get within shouting distance of a nomination. It’s unfortunate that we expect perfection from candidates.

        Not an ideal candidate by any means, but compared to the alternatives? 1000x better? Maybe 10000x?

        1. Sure real time questions can be tough that’s the reason that you know, prepare. Guess what questions you will be asked. Develop a set of core principles to help guide you. GJ did not do that for the LP debates or the general. I am truly baffled as to the reason he sought the nom.

          Sure GJ is better than the other candidates, but he still sucks…a lot. He is not a libertarian, and his VP candidate that he begged for is even less so. He is a poor figure head for libertarianism and the LP.

          1. that’s the reason that you know, prepare

            Agreed. Seems like you could take one of two approaches, especially if you understand that the MSM is asking you these questions because they think you’re a Hillary spoiler and they want to convince wavering progs not to vote for you.

            Approach 1: review a list of judges who are qualified for the court and decided on one or two names and why you would nominate them.

            Approach 2: “a SC justice is one of the most important roles in American government. This is something I would review extensively at the time of a vacancy. However, I would rule out taking a position such as ‘I will nominate justices who will overturn X.'”

            Yeah, it’s hard but, sheesh, you’ve been thinking about running for president for at least four years.

            1. Variation:

              “The Constitution specifies that the Senate shall give “advice and consent” to the President on SCOTUS picks. I would ask for the advice of the Senate on this, before I ask them to consent to the nomination. I like doing things the way the Constitution says, unlike the incumbent or either of the major party nominees.”

        2. I imagine myself subject to real-time questions from all possible directions and perspectives, and know that I would fare little better than Johnson.

          Really? I took the “Jeopardy” on-line test last week.

          I had 15 seconds each real-time to actually fucking type my answers (and I’m a 2 fingered typist) to questions on such things as “Classical Music”, “Opera”, “Royalty”, “Shakespeare”, “Royalty and Shakespeare” (who was King when BillyShakes died?), “Indian Geography”, “Pop Music” (Who the fuck is Meghan Trainor?), “12 Letter Words”, and 40 other diverse categories.

          And I absolutely “blanked” on a “Science” question (a category I usually crush).

          I would guess I got between 37-40…

      2. I bet neither Hillary nor Trump would know all 9 votes for Kelo. Might not even know it was 5-4.

        1. I bet neither Hillary nor Trump would say that Kelo was their litmus test without knowing all 9 votes for Kelo. This is basic campaign tactics. When you go out on a limb, you make sure you know the basics of that limb.

  13. I’m told I’m too hard on the Johnson. I say I’m not hard enough.

    There are some really fucking smart libertarians, and this is what the actual god damn party can put forward while being almost entirely unbound from popular politics. It’s pretty god damn pathetic.

    1. There are some really smart Libertarians. And there are a few libertarians who have
      actually gotten elected (even if they were Repubs at the time). But the two groups
      apparently don’t have much overlap.

    2. I remember the day of the convention when Weld got the VP spot. Gary’s reaction to that was so bizarre, that I knew right then this was going to be bad. Then the Samantha Bee thing… holy.fuck.the.what…

      1. What’s the Samantha Bee thing?

  14. And this is the same Johnson who was getting crap from Reason just last month because his running mate had cited Breyer as a good SCOTUS pick specifically because he didn’t know Breyer was on the majority side of Kelo? What the fuck do those two know about Kelo other than that apparently they’re supposed to be against it because them crazy liberaltarians are against it for some strange reason? Do they know anything at all about libertarians or libertarianism or the Libertarian Party?

    1. “Do they know anything at all about libertarians or libertarianism or the Libertarian Party?”

      I’m gonna have to go with NO.

  15. Meh, Kennedy’s such a slippery sumbitch, I don’t think it’s egregious to forget or not know and assume that he was against Kelo.

    1. When you continue to trot out that case as an egregious example of governmental abuse, and have stated its as close as you’d get to a litmus test for the Supreme Court, yes, you should fucking know. Does Johnson prepare for his public events at all? Has he done an ounce of actual research to be a candidate? It sure as fuck doesn’t appear as if that’s the case, which is especially funny because he seems to like to pump a lot of his campaign donations into hiring advisors rather than selling libertarianism.

      What basic fact does Johnson not have to know before some of the people around here criticize him for his dopiness? This is the face of libertarianism, and he looks unprepared and gives inconsistent, barely coherent responses when asked even basic shit if he’s not openly ignorant of the subject altogether.

      1. Who here hasn’t criticized his dopiness?

        1. As soon as he said he’s quitting weed the day before starting a campaign, to be ‘razor sharp’, I knew the LP were looking at some pretty embarrassing moments.

          1. It was “knife sharp”, of the butter spreading sort.

            1. Sledgehammer sharp.

    2. He doesn’t learn.
      He should’ve given the same answer he should’ve given about the foreign leaders he admires question: no one

    3. I don’t think it’s egregious to forget or not know and assume that he was against Kelo.

      The egregious thing is believing New London had a path to 5 votes without Kennedy.

  16. This is only newsworthy if Johnson had praised Kennedy by saying that the jurist’s pussy was supremely grabbable.

  17. A good Supreme Court Justice

    “On the court, as a member of the Four Horsemen, Butler voted to invalidate every piece of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal legislation that came before the court, and voted to strike down wage and hour laws, as well as governmental restrictions on business’ “freedom of contract.” Outside of these areas, much of his work on the court consisted of writing workmanlike, conservative opinions in the areas of public utility rate-setting and tax law. Unlike his colleague Oliver Wendell Holmes, Butler avoided memorable phrases and, according to his son, reviewed his draft opinions to strike any language which might be quotable.

    “While he was quite conservative on economic matters, Pierce Butler was remarkably liberal for his time in the area of the rights of the criminally accused.”

    Translated from liberal-speak: He defended federalism, along with the constitutional rights of property ownership and fair criminal procedure.

    1. Oops, prog-speak, not liberal-speak.

      (And he wasn’t modern and enlightened on the First Amendment, believing that there was no right to advocate overthrowing the government, that serving in the military was a duty of citizenship, and that if you’re going to accept separate but equal (as all his colleagues he did) then an out-of state scholarship would satisfy that standard)

    2. LOL freedom of contract

    3. Excellent choice. Next time I’ll read the thread before commenting.

  18. Gary Johnson is far from the first person to identify Kennedy as a somewhat libertarian-ish-leaning Justice; or at least the closest thing to one currently on the court. Reason has gushed over him for that reason many times… with some caveats (and it doesn’t sound like Johnson was exactly offering a ringing full-throated endorsement of him either).

    Who else was there to name? There aren’t any who haven’t gotten some big cases wrong from a libertarian perspective. But Kennedy’s tendency to thrown in with the liberals on some civil liberties, criminal justice, and social issues cases pretty clearly comes closest among the current line-up.

    As for not knowing the exact line-up on any given past court case… does *anybody* who doesn’t professionally teach about or report on the Supreme Court know that sort of thing off the top of their head without looking it up? I follow these issues as much as any layman; but I would not have known off-hand without checking that Kennedy was in the majority on Kelo, one of dozens of important cases from the past two decades.

    1. 1. He willingly made Kelo the most important issue for nominating Supreme Court justices. Expecting him to research the case isn’t asking much.
      2. Expecting your presidential candidate to be prepared for a question as simple as who the fuck would you nominate for the Supreme Court or to have a historical comparison to a past justice isn’t a very high standard. That’s incredibly basic stuff.

      Johnson is no more informed than fucking Trump is.

      1. If you don’t know that Kennedy has a mixed record and is famous for siding with the left on key issues, you don’t know anything about the court and have no business appointing Justices. It is really that simple.

    2. If one accepts the principle that the Supreme Court is supposed to be an unelected ruling oligarchy imposing policy on the nation, sure, you can argue Kennedy is the most libertarian of the oligarchs.

      If one thinks the purpose of the Supreme Court is to uphold the actual written Constitution, though, Thomas is head-and-shoulders superior to anyone else who’s been on it in the last 40 years. Almost all of his “non-libertarian” votes and written opinions come down to, “The Constitution is silent on the issue except insofar as it leaves power in this area to the states. So the states can legally be as stupid as they like.”

  19. Johnson is just not very bright. It is funny as hell to watch reason have to defend this doofus.

  20. Just read the headline. Haven’t read story or comments. Have this to say:
    Jesus Tap-Dancing Christ, Johnson! You asked for this job. You ran a campaign for this job. You won this job instead of other people who wanted it.

    1. I think some of the early complaints against him might hold some water. He mighy just enjoy the campaign. Face of the party.
      I dont know. Im still voting for him but i might be more interested in pushing the lp to someone better for 2020. And i wont strip on stage at the LNC.maybe.

      1. And i wont strip on stage at the LNC.maybe.

        Crusty just canceled his membership.

        1. Look, if you guys want to see that, I will.

  21. “Johnson’s failure to identify one of the justices who voted the wrong way in that case is not exactly inspiring.”

    No it’s not “inspiring”… it’s expected. He’s not an encyclopedia for crying out loud.

    My goodness some of these Gary Johnson articles are desperately reaching to find something, anything, negative. It’s almost amusing to watch the struggle.

    1. The only positive thing about GayJay’s LP run is how horribly he’s going to lose

      1. Hello there SIV, how about a little libertarian masturbatory proposition:

        Given their background, i.e., how much money they got from daddy, how much they relied upon government, including the coercive use of eminent domain, etc., with whom are you more impressed from an entrepreneurial perspective, Johnson or Trump?

  22. If only Gary could just stick to minor, trivial infractions like, I don’t know, lying his face off every day for the past 40 years, taking money from foreign governments, destroying evidence, having his enemies “commit suicide”, supporting endless wars, and being married to a rapist I could set aside our differences. But this?! Too far, man.

  23. It’d be nice to not be a laughing stock.

    1. Yeah, that’s what I hear.

    2. Well, it’s kinda difficult (for me) to get worked up about those that are doing the laughing. I mean, have you seen who they support?

  24. “That was horrible,” Mr. Johnson says. “I didn’t realize that Kennedy actually was part of that.”

    Well, to be fair to Johnson, they’re all terrible one way or another.

  25. Gary Johnson supporters are riding the short cattle cars to Hitlery Kkklinton’s reeducation camps

  26. Where was all this scrutiny back in 2012? Would’ve been nice to know he was such a lightweight before letting him waltz to another nomination. I just can’t get wound up about it now. The only reason we know these things is because he’s done well enough to get so much attention this time. And yes part of that is the horrible major party candidates, but that attention and poll numbers could’ve just as easily gone to Jill Stein given the way the media leans.

  27. Oh good lord. Did he call Kennedy a wonderful public servant?

  28. Johnson is lousy at interviews. I don’t know if he is lousy in comparison to his opponents who have the money to pay professional coaches to teach them, or if he is truly just bad at it at any level. My sister pointed out an interview where he spoke with his tongue out to the reporter giving the interview. What the fuck is that? I don’t get it. He’s a bit of an odd duck, but in this election, he is straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting compared to the goons from the two other parties.

    At the end of the day, he is currently the best libertarian leaning person to get any political traction. Name anyone else more consistently libertarian who has a better chance than Johnson? Tell me why either of the other two candidates are equal or better. This is a case where it is unwise to allow perfect to be the enemy of so-so.

    1. This election? No one is running who is closer.

    2. Name anyone else more consistently libertarian who has a better chance than Johnson?

      Me. Well, I don’t have a better chance, but I have the same chance as Johnson, which is zero.

  29. Kelo was wrongly decided? The decision that said ones private property could be confiscated for the benefit of another private entity?

    Gee, Damon, you must get outraged over the most numerous examples of that today…you know, oil and gas companies all over the country using ED to confiscate land for pipelines.

    And yet, you never even discuss it.

    1. you know, oil and gas companies all over the country using ED to confiscate land for pipelines.

      1) You’d be surprised how rare using ED for pipelines is
      2) I know you were around during the Keystone Pipeline days. The articles and the commentariat were pretty clear about their anti ED position regarding that project.

      1. It’s not rate at all. Pennsylvania, New Yprk Ioea, Georgia and more just this year. So far this year over 30 new pipeline projects have been approved. And every week a new one uses ED. And the protests only grow.…..o-protests

        It’s not condemned here. It’s hardly ever discussed. Point me to a Root article that discusses it. I’ll read it, but I don’t think you’ll find it.

        By the way, Stossel is already on the record saying he supports ED for pipelines.

        1. Yikes

          *rare New York Iowa

          Me spel good one day.

          1. Point me to a Root article that discusses it.

            Fair point on Damon. I don’t see any article that he wrote on it. Please continue taking him to task on that one. However, Ed and Scott each wrote articles that were against ED on Keystone.

            It’s disappointing to see Stossel go pro-ED on pipelines. He does kinda strike me as pro-business to a fault, and I’m not super surprise that he’s developed a blind spot. Oh well, he’s not perfect. I’ll have to take my shrine to him down.

            1. Do you have a link on those? I don’t doubt you, but I have not seen it, and I have said no one here does that. I will have to correct my statement then.

            2. My point with Root is he is supposed to be the ED expert here and it’s almost as if he would prefer no one knows about ED for pipelines.

              Even if he agrees with Stossel. At least Stossel said it.

      2. Here you go, per Stossel

        “Eminent domain can be wonderful if it’s put to important public use, say, claiming land for highways, railroads or a pipeline.”

        1. Maybe he can explain that public use thing. Roads? Yeah, public uses it. Railroad? Yep. Pipelines?

          Do you know any citizen using that pipeline? Oh I see…lets expand use to mean common carrier. Of course none of those pipelines ever really become common carriers.

    2. Except for all the times we say E.D. is terrible, sure.

      1. It’s never terrible here if it’s ED for an oil company. Show me one article that says it should not occur…I will read it.

    3. Here is a new attempt to stop ED for Dakota Access just this week in Iowa.


      1. So let me get this straight. You’re all mad because a libertarian magazine has not come out strongly enough for you against taking people’s stuff for the benefit of a select group, while you nonstop act as chief apologist for politicians whose entire platforms are built around taking people’s stuff for the benefit of their preferred groups?

    4. The need to build things like roads, pipelines, railroads, canals, etc. on long linear segments of land is the prime justification for eminent domain. You can’t do that by ordinary property buying practices because you have to buy from hundreds or thousands of landowners, each of whom have an incentive to hold out for an exorbitant price.

      This is even more the case when you have envirowhackos who have set out to disrupt any pipeline building while clothing themselves in false respect for property rights and religious freedom of NA’s whose piety seems only to appear when the Left can make use of it.

  30. I have mixed feelings about Kelo – something can be bad public policy without necessarily being clearly unconstitutional. There is no question there are far worse takings and land use decisions.

    Johnson frustrates me because he is not articulate. All he had to do was say “I said Kennedy was closest to ideal. I didn’t say he was perfect.” and he wouldn’t have sounded ignorant.

    From a libertarian standpoint, it is hard to think of a better justice than Kennedy.. i’m actually trying to think of who i would put in second place….

    1. Pierce Butler — thorn in the side of Oliver Wendell Holmes.

  31. Kennedy also voted with the majority in Gonzales v. Raich (the privately-grown medical marijuana = interstate commerce case).

  32. Weak sauce. If you’re going to place a libertarian litmus test on his response to a trick question where there are no answers that would pass your litmus test in the first place, you are being disingenuous as shit. Kennedy is arguably the most libertarian justice on the court today but he is no purist and gets decisions wrong. He was right on most of the other major cases the past few decades but wrong on Kelo, so he is the lowest scum of the earth….

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  34. Bless his sweet little (semi) libertarian heart. I’ll vote for him, but he’s an idiot who likes to say nice things about as many people as is possible, most of it undeserved. Is he concerned about being perceived as grumpy? I don’t get it. It’s as if he and Weld decided they’d be really positive and sweet, as if that will win a bunch of votes for their duet. Nonsense, pure and simple.

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