Todd Brewster: Eminent domain ruling most controversial since Roe

Historians in the News

DANBURY -- Western Connecticut State University Professor Todd Brewster calls the U.S. Supreme Court's 2005 eminent domain ruling the most controversial since the 1973 landmark abortion case, Roe v. Wade.
The decision, stemming from a New London case, gave power to cities to tear down homes for shopping malls and hotel complexes for tax revenue.

On Wednesday at 7 p.m., the lawyers representing the parties in Kelo v. New London, the bitter case that pitted the city of New London against a homeowner, will be at WestConn for a debate.

It will be held in Room 125 of the Science Building on the midtown campus on 181 White St.

Brewster, an award-winning journalist and historian from Ridgefield, will be moderator. He was named a "distinguished professor" at WestConn last year.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision, that the city of New London could use eminent domain to claim private property so it could build a corporate office park.

The decision means that local governments may seize people's homes and businesses against their will for private economic development. It was a defeat for several New London residents whose homes were to be torn down to build an office complex.

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