Strahilevitz Talks Kelo and Baseball on NPR

Take Me Out To The Stimulus Plan
Scott Simon
National Public Radio
July 25, 2009

On July 14, President Obama took the mound in a Chicago White Sox jacket in St. Louis to throw out the first pitch of the All-Star game.

The lanky southpaw from the South Side threw a dying quail of a pitch that reminded fans: he's a great basketball player.

But presidents can inspire, and on Thursday, Mark Buehrle of the White Sox, who shook hands with President Obama, threw a perfect game: a no-hit, no-walks, no-errors 5-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.

This tied the White Sox with the Detroit Tigers for first place in the American League Central Division. The president's team is in a pennant race.

And the president doesn't have to just stay on the sidelines. In Chicago, politics isn't just the chance to do good, but to do some good for your friends.

So this week, I wondered if the president could declare that it's a matter of national security for the White Sox to acquire another good starting pitcher for their pennant run.

I received a bracing analysis from Lior Strahilevitz of the—it may not surprise you to learn — University of Chicago Law School, who says the Supreme Court's 2005 Kelo decision upholds the right of cities to invoke "eminent domain" to transfer property — which, no matter how much money they make, baseball players are — to stimulate economic development.

Read more or listen to the story on the NPR website.

Lior Strahilevitz