Call it Kelo Karma: The outrageous abuse of eminent domain permitted by the Kelo Decision has resulted in disaster for the presumptive beneficiaries. After turning property law on its head by allowing the state to take private property from one owner to give to another, the Kelo decision stripped families from their homes, homes some had lived in for decades, to give the land to Pfizer for a development the local politicians of New London Connecticut determined would add more economic value to the land and generate increased property tax revenue.
The private homes that New London, Conn., took away from Suzette Kelo and her neighbors have been torn down. Their former site is a wasteland of fields of weeds, a monument to the power of eminent domain. But now Pfizer, the drug company whose neighboring research facility had been the original cause of the homes' seizure, has just announced that it is closing up shop in New London. To lure those jobs to New London a decadeago, the local government promised to demolish the older residential neighborhood adjacent to the land Pfizer was buying for next-to-nothing.