Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Will John Roberts Be Another Grave Disappointment for Pro-Lifers?

Many socially conservative Christians have assumed that George Bush as Republican President would, in spite of his liberal tendencies, appoint a conservative, pro-life justice to the Supreme Court, or if not overtly pro-life, at least somebody who cares about the intent of the Founding Fathers. This assumption overlooks the painful fact that seven of the justices in our often liberal and activist court were appointed by Republicans. Now we may have another Souteresque mystery man in John Roberts. Ann Coulter's column on John Roberts rings true with me. Don't hold your breath waiting for the Supreme Court to begin following the Constitution again.

So here's a question for you legal scholars: In light of the recent Kelo case, if a local government decides that it can raise more tax revenues by condemning Church property and turning it over to Wal-Mart, would our current or next-generation Supreme Court stand in the way?

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ouch, Ouch, and double ouch. I wish Bush would be bold.

John W. Redelfs said...

You wrote:
So here's a question for you legal scholars: In light of the recent Kelo case, if a local government decides that it can raise more tax revenues by condemning Church property and turning it over to Wal-Mart, would our current or next-generation Supreme Court stand in the way?

More interesting to me is the question of Church real estate in Jackson County, MO. It is my understanding that the Church is the largest owner of undeveloped land in the county, and that local developers are very frustrated by the Church's unwillingness to develop the land. They feel it is negatively impacting the value of their own holdings. If the Church was in danger of losing some of their Jackson County land to private developers as a result of the Kelo decision, would they make some attempt to develop the land themselves? If so, what would they build?

Mormanity said...

Now that's an interesting question! How about a tattoo removal parlor?

David said...

Despite Republican presidents' awful history of appointing justices, I think we can be confident in President Bush. At least with regard to appointing lower court judges, President Bush has been very good.

Specifically with regards to John Roberts, I think there is reason to to take heart in that he and his wife are devout Catholics and his wife was associated with Feminists for Life, a pro-life organization.

As to your last question, I assume Mr. Roberts would not uphold the ridiculous holding in Kelo but it won't make any immediate difference since Justice O'Connor wrote the dissent in that opinion - which was actually pretty good. Fortunately, there looks to be a significant blowback from the decision prompting many states to pass their own laws strengthening their eminent domain laws, which is where it really matters anyway.

And I bet tatoo removal parlors would be a killer investment! The Church should start a franchise.

Charles said...

I think the Kelo ruling would have different implications for the church. To my understanding this is currently in use to transfer ownership from private hands to a business.

How would these rulings apply to a business that might be failing or just starting. Could a bigger company like Wal-Mart say here is a local store, give us their land and let us develop it, we can do more.

The thing about the church is that it is religious, would the first ammendment provide protection from Kelo? Could we argue that by taking a church's property and giving it to business the government is denying religous freedoms?

As for Roberts appointment, I hope he can be a catylist for change in the pro-life movement.

W. Lyle Stamps said...

Robert's wife wasn't just in a pro-life group; she was the executive VP. I doubt you can go to bed every night with a committed pro-lifer and have opposite views on the subject. just my best guess.

re: Kelo, Churches & takings. There was such an attempt to condemn church land in Cal. for a Costco. If I remember right, the Cal. city in question decided to back down under threat of lawsuit.

Anonymous said...

One of the highlights of my time in DC as an intern for a semester was being able to attend the Souter hearings. It was fantastic to see all the groups protesting him without yet knowing how we would vote on the issues they were most interested in. Let's hope J. Roberts is another Souter and doesn't bow to all the special interets groups the Republicans seem to be joined at the hip with.

Anonymous said...

The fact of the matter is this. Roe V. Wade cannot be overturned. If it is, women will be subject to back alley abortions. The Republican party knows this even if the conservitive movement does not. Beyond that there are too many people in the nation who either don't want it overturned or don't care if others have abortions. If the Supreme Court overturned the decision you can bet that the Republicans will not retain control in DC for long. It is the law of the land now and it would be almost impossible to strike it down.