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Is Sotomayor Soft on Property Rights?

Friend and property law scholar Ilya Somin worries about Sotomayor's role in issuing an unpublished 2nd Circuit opinion in the case of Didden v. Village of Port Chester. The decision validated a plainly pretextual taking of private property under the Constitution in a move that arguably stretched the Supreme Court's already distended interpretation, in Kelo v. City of New London, of the "public use" language in the Takings Clause even further.

UPDATE: University of Chicago law professor and frequent Manhattan Institute visiting scholar Richard Epstein shares Somin's concern.

UPDATE II: In the interest of fairness, Somin reports that Sotomayor authored a strong opinion striking down New York City's former practice of indefinitely impounding vehicles belonging to criminal suspects without commencing any civil forfeiture proceedings. Clearly, she is willing to enforce some constitutional limits on state interference with property rights.

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.