“You do have a problem with a President demanding the federal government go ahead and seize private land and then promising to pardon those who seized the land,” challenged Joe Walsh, the former Illinois congressman running in the Republican Party primaries against Donald Trump.
Matt Welch, writing in the LA Times, quoted this Walsh tweet (three days after the Walsh2020 campaign announcement) to express alarm about where the GOP is heading. “We are accustomed to some ideological shape-shifting when the White House changes teams,” writes Welch. “But what’s so striking about this week’s slate of immigration-related controversies — including the one that supplanted the land-grab pardon: the administration’s new rules governing potential citizenship for the children of U.S. service people abroad — is that none of it should come as a surprise.”
Because Trump is doing (sorta) what he promised to do. Which includes taking land by eminent domain.
Before his election, Trump had proclaimed his support for the Kelo decision that signed off on governments nabbing land to give to private developers. At issue now is condemning land to build The Wall — at least an arguably public use.
While “private property rights used to be foundational to the conservative movement,” Welch bemoans that Trump “didn’t care. And that Republicans cared a hell of a lot less than they claimed to.”
Again, unsurprising. Republican pols did little to nothing for property rights or limited government pre-Trump. So these anti-leftist voters went for someone — anyone? — who could deliver something.
I doubt that candidate Walsh will convince many that he can deliver much of anything.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.