Thursday, June 30, 2005
Never think legislators are smarter than you are: If you've been reading this blog since last week, you're infinitely more informed about the Supreme Court's Kelo decision than House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi -- in this case the D really does stand for "dumb".
Q Later this morning, many Members of the House Republican leadership, along with John Cornyn from the Senate, are holding a news conference on eminent domain, the decision of the Supreme Court the other day, and they are going to offer legislation that would restrict it, prohibiting federal funds from being used in such a manner.
Two questions: What was your reaction to the Supreme Court decision on this topic, and what do you think about legislation to, in the minds of opponents at least, remedy or changing it?
Ms. Pelosi. As a Member of Congress, and actually all of us and anyone who holds a public office in our country, we take an oath of office to uphold the Constitution of the United States. Very central to that in that Constitution is the separation of powers. I believe that whatever you think about a particular decision of the Supreme Court, and I certainly have been in disagreement with them on many occasions, it is not appropriate for the Congress to say we're going to withhold funds for the Court because we don't like a decision.
Q Not on the Court, withhold funds from the eminent domain purchases that wouldn't involve public use. I apologize if I framed the question poorly. It wouldn't be withholding federal funds from the Court, but withhold Federal funds from eminent domain type purchases that are not just involved in public good.
Ms. Pelosi. Again, without focusing on the actual decision, just to say that when you withhold funds from enforcing a decision of the Supreme Court you are, in fact, nullifying a decision of the Supreme Court. This is in violation of the respect for separation of church -- powers in our Constitution, church and state as well. Sometimes the Republicans have a problem with that as well. But forgive my digression.
So the answer to your question is, I would oppose any legislation that says we would withhold funds for the enforcement of any decision of the Supreme Court no matter how opposed I am to that decision. And I'm not saying that I'm opposed to this decision, I'm just saying in general.
Q Could you talk about this decision? What you think of it?
Ms. Pelosi. It is a decision of the Supreme Court. If Congress wants to change it, it will require legislation of a level of a constitutional amendment. So this is almost as if God has spoken. It's an elementary discussion now. They have made the decision.
Q Do you think it is appropriate for municipalities to be able to use eminent domain to take land for economic development?
Ms. Pelosi. The Supreme Court has decided, knowing the particulars of this case, that that was appropriate, and so I would support that.
Why do we even have Rep. Pelosi in Washington, D.C.? I mean, if the Supreme Court's decisions are "almost as if God has spoken," then what use is she? If the Supreme Court a decade from now overturns Roe v. Wade, will Pelosi genuflect to that decision from on high too?
This woman's ignorance baffling. The Kelo decision was on the front page of every newspaper in the nation. The proposed legislation referenced by the questioner has wide, bipartisan support. Yet, Pelosi seems to not want to know anything about what is perhaps the most outrageous assault on the Fifth Amendment in U.S. history.
Surely the Democrats can come up with a leader who has just a little bit of intellectual curiosity.