George W. Bush Profited-RW
One of the most famous eminent domain cases involved... where baseball's Texas Rangers play. At the time, future President George W. Bush was an owner.
In 1991, the team convinced local voters to approve a tax increase that helped build a new $191 million stadium. The city of Arlington used eminent domain to acquire the property from hundreds of private owners, claiming the stadium was a "public use" just like highways, schools, and government buildings.
Several property owners were lowballed, and court decisions increased their final take. The compensation for one 13-acre plot was increased from $877,000 to $5 million, for example. The city, not the team, was held responsible for making the larger payments.
The stadium clearly benefitted the Rangers' owners more than anyone else. Bush turned his initial $600,000 investment into $15 million when the team was sold in 1999. But it has produced little of the promised economic benefit to Arlington, and there has never been a real "public use" factor aside from baseball fans' paying their money to see games.
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
How George W. Bush Profited From Eminent Domain (By Taking Properties From Hundreds of Private Owners)
Steve Stanek, a research fellow at The Heartland Institute, emails to point out that when he was managing editor of Heartland's Budget & Tax News, he oversaw a piece that was run on eminent domain and the taking of property for sports stadiums. Below, from the piece, Kelo Could Ban Takings for Stadiums, is the part applicable to Bush. Note well: The article mentions properties were taken by eminent domain from hundreds of private owners:
at 3:57:00 PM